There is so much to figure out when there’s a baby on the way. From your little one’s name and who might be the godparents to which room is going to be the nursery, the list of decisions goes on and on. One important consideration all mothers-to-be should keep in mind is their choice of hospital.
As not all medical centers offer the same amenities or have the same level of care, it’s essential to choose the right one for your labor and delivery well before your child is ready to come into the world. To help, let’s briefly go over a few of the top factors to weigh into your maternity hospital decision.
First and foremost, there’s the matter of coverage. Having a baby in a hospital is often an expensive experience. If you deliver at a hospital that’s out of network with your insurance, or if the provider or certain services are not covered, the cost could skyrocket. As such, it’s essential to locate a provider and facility that will work with your insurance while still offering the services you need and desire.
Once you have a list of potential providers, it’s recommended to schedule an introductory visit. You should use this meeting to determine if each is a good fit for you by asking plenty of questions. For example, you could ask how many deliveries are done each week, is there board certification and what is the philosophy regarding pregnancy, labor, delivery and postpartum care.
It’s also advised to tour the hospital where the provider works. Having a good understanding of the facilities, staff and protocols ahead of time may ease your mind on the big day. It also works to ensure you are able to follow your specific birth plan. While touring, determine if the hospital has a Newborn Intensive Care Unit (NICU), if there are perinatologists or neonatologists on staff and other serious considerations regarding care.
Furthermore, you’ll want to ensure the standard procedures are suited to the experience you have in mind. This could pertain to any visitation limitations, access to a private suite and the nurse-to-patient ratio. Inquire about the features and amenities available as well, such as birthing whirlpools, balls or chairs.
One crucial factor to go over is security measures for both the maternity ward and throughout the hospital. Whether it’s safety concerns over pathogen exposures or the infant security plans that are in place, you should go over precautions such as these carefully. Inquire about the anti-abduction technology used to keep babies safe and the various practices used to support new mothers.
Asking questions about your birthing options and being choosy with the hospital is important. Don’t hesitate to reach out to the healthcare providers in your area as the time to deliver your little one draws near. For additional factors to consider when choosing the right maternity hospital for you, please see the accompanying resource.
Infographic provided by McRoberts Technologies, healthcare RTLS
Author bio: Meredith McRoberts is Chief Executive Officer and the fifth-generation owner of McRoberts Corporation. She is a respected innovator and leader in the security industry. McRoberts established McRoberts Technologies to address specific security risks through the use of leading-edge technology and unmatched customer service. She holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Colorado Boulder.