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Choosing where to deliver your baby

The end of pregnancy cannot come sooner for many women. The initial excitement of carrying a pregnancy starts to wane off towards the last few weeks. Carrying the extra weight causes unending fatigue, and ordinary activities are further limited by more pronounced bodily changes towards the final weeks. And the expectation of seeing the long awaited baby adds to the desire of seeing the end of the pregnancy.

Decisions about where to deliver should ideally be made pretty early. But it is not unusual to become increasingly anxious about the place of delivery closer to the due date. You should do your homework well, and choose a delivery facility that best suits your expectations.

Choose to deliver in an easily accessible facility, in relation to your residence. The onset of labor is very unpredictable, being caught out on a lengthy drive in unpredictable traffic is the last thing you want. Be sure alternate modes of transport to the chosen facility are available, including public means if that becomes necessary.

Next, you need to be satisfied as much as you can about the safety of where you chose to deliver. Labor is dynamic and unpredictable, with potential for things to go wrong. Maternities must have processes in place that ensure the best outcomes for mothers and their babies. Inquire about the number of deliveries every year, and complication rates. Minor problems are common during delivery, and usually easily dealt with. Maternal and newborn deaths are the worst complications, but are uncommon. Be wary of delivery units where major complications appear to be disproportionate.

The infrastructure in maternities is another thing you should consider. Are the delivery rooms large enough to accommodate you and your chosen delivery companion? Is privacy and confidentiality well catered for? The ideal delivery room should be private, only accessible to you and your chosen companions. It should be large enough to accommodate all the monitoring equipment required for labor and delivery. And en-suite bathroom facilities should be available to further maintain privacy and dignity during labor.

Be sure to inquire about staffing. Midwives play a very critical role during labor. You want to deliver in a facility with adequate numbers of midwives, all well trained and very professional. A one-on-one midwife is the standard, this is what you want. Choose your supervising doctors carefully. There are pros and cons of either having an individual Obstetrician, or a team of Obstetrician working together. What is important is ready availability of the doctors soonest they are needed. You’ll of course select the best of Obstetricians available.

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The end of pregnancy cannot come sooner for many women. The initial excitement of carrying a pregnancy starts to wane off towards the last few weeks. Carrying the extra weight causes unending fatigue, and ordinary activities are further limited by more pronounced bodily changes towards the final weeks. And the expectation of seeing the long awaited baby adds to the desire of seeing the end of the pregnancy.

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