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Forum: September 2013 Playroom

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  • 2 Post By beckiethedoula
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  #1  
March 7th, 2013, 08:58 AM
AIK112018's Avatar Elizabeth
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 1,244
For those of you who are having a hospital birth, do you get a tour? If so, how far along will you be?
I will be unwillingly having a hospital birth, and thought of some questions to ask, because I gave birth in a different hospital with my last 3, so this is very new to me.
I figured even if I have a while to wait before my tour, if I post my questions now, it will be easier to remember, and I can just look it back up under my posts

1. What kind of Emergency Care is there available for my child, if neccessary? Is there a newborn intensive care unit on site? Is there any situation in which my baby would need to be transferred to another facility?

2. What are the visiting hours and conditions?

3. What is the average length of stay?

4. Will I be able to choose my own labor positions and move freely?

5. Would I labor and give birth in one room, or would I be required to move just before the birth? Would I stay in the same room after I give birth?

6. Can I film my birth, If I chose so? What about pictures?

7. What is the policy on and availability of intervention, pain relief, enema's, fetal monitoring, tears and episiotomy?

8. What breastfeeding resources are available? Does the hospital have a lactation consultant on staff?

9. How would I ensure that my breastfed baby would not be given bottles of water or formula or a pacifier? Do you pass out formula samples?

10. How many people of my choosing can be present at the birth?

11. Will I be able to have showers or baths?

12. Will I be able to eat and drink during labor?

13. What is the policy on baby feeding, sleeping and separation?

14. Will I be sent home with diapers, or samples? If so, how much?

15. How comfortable is this hospital with natural birth? Do you have equipment like birthing balls, or squatting bars?

16. Will I be able to play my own music?

17. How do you do fetal monitoring?

18. How often are your shift changes?

19. Can my partner stay overnight with my baby and I?

20. Is there any "extra" costs I should know about that isn't covered by my health insurance?

21. What is the usual care if a labor is progressing slowly?

22. Will you consider other methods of "turning" baby if he/she is in a breech position before considering a c-section? (this is probably another question I should ask my doctor)

23. Would my baby be separated from me immediately or shortly after birth? For what purpose and how long?

24. Who would I speak to about discussing newborn care? Like the screening procedures, and the medicines my child will receive after birth?







.... that's all I can think of right now. Hopefully it will help you ladies out as well! If you can think of anything else, feel free to add more!
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  #2  
March 7th, 2013, 09:03 AM
MandersM's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 1,193
Oh my word...I never even thought of half of those questions!! Thanks for the list!
I get a hospital tour & have to pre-register...but my doc said I have time for that. So I'll probably do it the end of my 2nd trimester, or early 3rd. I'll see what my actual OB says when I meet her for the first time in April.
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Expecting our first September 22, 2013!!
Positive HPT: 01/15
1st GP Appt: 01/23
2nd GP Appt: 02/20 - wasn't able to pick up a heartbeat
3rd GP Appt: 02-21 - due to spotting, still no hb
1st U/S: 02/25 - 10wk u/s due to spotting > saw the hb and our little blob!!
NPT U/S: 03/15 - got a wave from our LO!! And all looks well. We went public!!
3rd GP Appt: 03/22 - heard the hb...157!
1st OB Appt: 04/22 - LOVE my OB. She doesn't rush, as is pretty knowledgable about crohn's and pregnancy. hb = 159!
20wk u/s: 05/06 - Loved seeing our little babe again! Tech was very tight lipped though, and no medical info was given. And we're holding off on the gender until the reveal party!!
Reveal Party: 05/18 - IT'S A GIRL!!!!
OB Appt: 05/22 -




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  #3  
March 7th, 2013, 09:12 AM
beckiethedoula's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: the land of milk and honey, UT
Posts: 2,089
That's a great list!
I would also remember to ask:

Are recovery rooms shared or private?

What is their standard of care when it comes to postpartum pain management? (narcotics, nsaids, etc?)

What hospital staff (besides medical staff) will be allowed in to my room during my stay? Can I meet with them before the birth so my recovery time will have less disturbances? (I'm talking about the people who come in during labor to talk about cord blood banking, the picture taking people after the birth, the random hospital admissions people, the "never shake your baby" video people. These people aren't at every hospital. It's just some examples of what I've experienced personally and seen as a doula...)

Just a couple ideas!
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  #4  
March 7th, 2013, 09:39 AM
AIK112018's Avatar Elizabeth
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 1,244
Oh Thank you Beckie! The picture part reminded me of another question!!

In the hospital I will be giving birth in they take photos of all of their newborns and put them up on their website. You cant view any pictures without a password, but it makes me wonder if other parents who give out their password to other family members, friends, etc., will be able to see my child as well. I don't want that.
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  #5  
March 7th, 2013, 10:28 AM
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The hospital I go to does the newborn pics as well, but for us each parent has a password for their childs photo only, so even if they give out the password they have the ppl can only see their child not everyones.
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  #6  
March 7th, 2013, 10:33 AM
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Wow never even thought of most of those! Copying it for myself, thanks!
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  #7  
March 7th, 2013, 10:45 AM
Alpha_allie1010's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: San Antonio TX
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Yeah I toured the hospital as part of our child birth classes once I hit viability but I had actually already toured it once before. My Dr had privileges at two different hospitals so I got to choose which one to deliver at. I will say for me the deciding factors were....1)room size. One had a LOT bigger post pardom rooms then the other did and it had a bed for DH as opposed to just a recliner. I had to sleep in one of those recliners when DH had a kidney stone....they suck. 2) the NICU level. One had a level 4 NICU which is as good as it gets. The other one only had a level 2 nursery. So the Dr told me if there was something wrong with the baby and she needed to be transferred to another hospital that they don't transfer the mom also. I would have to wait to be discharged and DH would be going between two hospitals. I didn't want to be separated from her and that also means BF would be a LOT harder.


So I would ask what level NICU they have too
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  #8  
March 7th, 2013, 11:22 AM
babybatax2's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 5,141
My biggest thing is NICU. I've been looking into which ones have the best.

We did a tour between 20-25 weeks. But I didn't deliver at that hospital because their NICU was only level 2 and they would have had o send the babies elsewhere.
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  #9  
March 7th, 2013, 11:55 AM
TaraJo29's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 1,741
1. What kind of Emergency Care is there available for my child, if neccessary? Is there a newborn intensive care unit on site? Is there any situation in which my baby would need to be transferred to another facility?

2. What are the visiting hours and conditions? This might be on the hospital's website if you look under maternity care.

3. What is the average length of stay? This also might be on the website.

4. Will I be able to choose my own labor positions and move freely? More specifically, you might want to ask if they require continuous fetal monitoring. That's usually what really hinders you from moving around. Those dang bands will slide off your belly, plus you're attached to the monitor. However, sometimes they have a "mobile monitor" which you could ask about. I still hate the straps on my belly, but at least you could walk around.

5. Would I labor and give birth in one room, or would I be required to move just before the birth? Would I stay in the same room after I give birth?

6. Can I film my birth, If I chose so? What about pictures? Forbidding pictures would be insanely ridiculous and highly unlikely, IMO.

7. What is the policy on and availability of intervention, pain relief, enema's, fetal monitoring, tears and episiotomy? Nobody does enemas anymore (unless you want one! I, for one, was really constipated when I went in to be induced one time and ended up asking the nurse for one, LOL!). It is also very unusual to do an episiotomy unless it's really necessary. That's a question for your OB though, and I'm sure they will tell you that they won't slice you open unless it looks really necessary. As far as pain meds, you could also tell your caregiver to write in your chart that you don't want to be offered pain meds unless you *ask.* (If you'd like to go au natural.) Just a tip.

8. What breastfeeding resources are available? Does the hospital have a lactation consultant on staff?

9. How would I ensure that my breastfed baby would not be given bottles of water or formula or a pacifier? Do you pass out formula samples? They should ask you your preference when you're in the hospital and, for me, they would write it on the baby's name sign on the bassinet.

10. How many people of my choosing can be present at the birth?

11. Will I be able to have showers or baths? You could also ask about if they have a hot tub. It's one of those things that they might not tell you unless you ask. But beware, sometimes it's hard to get out once you get in, especially if labor progresses to the point where you reeeeally don't want to move much. That's why I stay on dry land except for a walk-in shower.

12. Will I be able to eat and drink during labor?

13. What is the policy on baby feeding, sleeping and separation?

14. Will I be sent home with diapers, or samples? If so, how much?

15. How comfortable is this hospital with natural birth? Do you have equipment like birthing balls, or squatting bars?

16. Will I be able to play my own music?

17. How do you do fetal monitoring?

18. How often are your shift changes?

19. Can my partner stay overnight with my baby and I?

20. Is there any "extra" costs I should know about that isn't covered by my health insurance? Phone and tv aren't covered at my hospital. And of course cafeteria for guests.

21. What is the usual care if a labor is progressing slowly?

22. Will you consider other methods of "turning" baby if he/she is in a breech position before considering a c-section? (this is probably another question I should ask my doctor) Agreed. That's an OB question.

23. Would my baby be separated from me immediately or shortly after birth? For what purpose and how long? Usually they do the bath, the hearing test, and then see the pediatrician. The pediatrician usually examines all the babies so many times a day. I forget how many it was in my hospital. You could send dh to be with the baby during the bath & hearing test at least.

24. Who would I speak to about discussing newborn care? Like the screening procedures, and the medicines my child will receive after birth? The OB should ask you and put in your chart whether you want your baby to receive the vitamin K and Hep B shot. In some states there are laws about what your baby MUST receive in the hospital... for instance, I *think* in Ny it's the law the baby receives vitamin K. But I wait to give Hep B until the baby is a few weeks older and sees my regular pediatrician. They don't care at all. And don't worry, anything you have an option about they will probably ask you and have you fill out consent paperwork.

My advice is to try to relax a bit. I had a giant list like this with my first and I think it doesn't help your labor experience to be on edge and worrying about every little thing. They will ask you your preferences or you can tell them when you get there if you're not asked. Nurses are usually the ones dealing with you for most of your labor and tend to want to make you happy and comfortable. They are tending to laboring mamas day in and day out. It's nice to know what to expect, but I'd make sure you ask what's really necessary and also ask in a way that doesn't presume the worst of them. If they feel they are being interrogated, they might feel off and your experience won't be any better for it, KWIM? Also, realize that they can't change hospital policies for you if it's an actual policy, so some of these answers will just be to satisfy your curiosity and know what to expect, not because there's a whole lot of option. Unfortunately, when you accept services from a hospital you are agreeing to receiving their care on the hospital's terms.

Also, if you wait a bit, your OB should start telling you a lot of this stuff (hospital visitor's hours, what to expect, offer a tour, etc) once you are closer to your due date. Mine gives out a packet of info about the hospital and sheets to pre-register, etc. I think they usually don't start talking about it (in my experience anyway) until you are at least 7 months along.

Good luck! I'm sure it will all work out.
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Last edited by TaraJo29; March 7th, 2013 at 11:58 AM.
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  #10  
March 7th, 2013, 12:42 PM
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I agree with Tara. A lot of these questions are worth looking into and most of this information is available in the hospital's website (atleast they do for mine). However, I have decided to be more relaxed this time. I think its also because I am more confident this time around and already know what to expect, plus which interventions are more important to me. Things like giving a paci, feeding formula will be asked for your consent....goodluck!
I wont be touring the hospital until my third tri and it will be just for a quick look. Two of my friends gave birth there and I already know how the recovery room looks.
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  #11  
March 7th, 2013, 03:48 PM
Sk8ermaiden's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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Location: Houston, TX
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I think I will take my tour in June. I can really just sign up online for whichever one I want.

I won't be asking a ton of questions, because I already know the answers. I just have a few.
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  #12  
March 7th, 2013, 04:34 PM
LauraS214's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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We will take a tour closer to due date. We've been to the hospital we chose once before then a different one for our second. The other hospital did not allow filming or photos until baby was cleaned and in the blanket so it unfortunately is a rule for some hospitals.
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  #13  
March 7th, 2013, 05:15 PM
Sk8ermaiden's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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It is a rule for MANY hospitals. Or at least there is a rule that here is NO video or pictures during the actual delivery. Most hospitals here have that rule.

And I remember being in my BFFs recovery room when the nurse went to check her and expressed complete surprise that she had not had an episiotomy. There are a lot of doctors and hospitals that still do them regularly. Most of the intervention stuff and definitely the tear vs. epi stuff need to be discussed with your doc though.
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  #14  
March 7th, 2013, 06:29 PM
AIK112018's Avatar Elizabeth
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Posts: 1,244
Quote:
Originally Posted by TaraJo29 View Post

2. What are the visiting hours and conditions? This might be on the hospital's website if you look under maternity care.
- Not there, I looked

3. What is the average length of stay? This also might be on the website. - Not there either


6. Can I film my birth, If I chose so? What about pictures? Forbidding pictures would be insanely ridiculous and highly unlikely, IMO. My cousin gave birth in a hospital where no pictures were allowed until after birth.

7. What is the policy on and availability of intervention, pain relief, enema's, fetal monitoring, tears and episiotomy? Nobody does enemas anymore (unless you want one! I, for one, was really constipated when I went in to be induced one time and ended up asking the nurse for one, LOL!). It is also very unusual to do an episiotomy unless it's really necessary. That's a question for your OB though, and I'm sure they will tell you that they won't slice you open unless it looks really necessary. As far as pain meds, you could also tell your caregiver to write in your chart that you don't want to be offered pain meds unless you *ask.* (If you'd like to go au natural.) Just a tip.
- Enemas were available when I had my daughter (and in all honesty, i'd rather an enema versus pooping on the bed in front of my husband, which happened with my son. LOL) Episiotomys were done often in my previous hospital...

20. Is there any "extra" costs I should know about that isn't covered by my health insurance? Phone and tv aren't covered at my hospital. And of course cafeteria for guests. - in our old hospital, we were given a voucher for my husband to use for food... and they also had a "store" inside the maternity ward where we could purchase boppys, breastfeeding supplies, carseats, etc.

23. Would my baby be separated from me immediately or shortly after birth? For what purpose and how long? Usually they do the bath, the hearing test, and then see the pediatrician. The pediatrician usually examines all the babies so many times a day. I forget how many it was in my hospital. You could send dh to be with the baby during the bath & hearing test at least.
- This shouldnt be immediately after birth though, in my opinion. In my previous hospital, the bath was done on the 2nd day, and the hearing tests were done on the third day, right before we left to go home.




My advice is to try to relax a bit. I had a giant list like this with my first and I think it doesn't help your labor experience to be on edge and worrying about every little thing. They will ask you your preferences or you can tell them when you get there if you're not asked. Nurses are usually the ones dealing with you for most of your labor and tend to want to make you happy and comfortable. They are tending to laboring mamas day in and day out. It's nice to know what to expect, but I'd make sure you ask what's really necessary and also ask in a way that doesn't presume the worst of them. If they feel they are being interrogated, they might feel off and your experience won't be any better for it, KWIM? Also, realize that they can't change hospital policies for you if it's an actual policy, so some of these answers will just be to satisfy your curiosity and know what to expect, not because there's a whole lot of option. Unfortunately, when you accept services from a hospital you are agreeing to receiving their care on the hospital's terms.

Also, if you wait a bit, your OB should start telling you a lot of this stuff (hospital visitor's hours, what to expect, offer a tour, etc) once you are closer to your due date. Mine gives out a packet of info about the hospital and sheets to pre-register, etc. I think they usually don't start talking about it (in my experience anyway) until you are at least 7 months along.

Good luck! I'm sure it will all work out.
Thank you! I am trying my best not to stress... but I had a bad hospital experience for my last birth, and then on top of that we have moved to a new state, and i dont know anyone here that can give me their opinion on this hospital, so im doing this all on my own. i'd rather know EVERYTHING possible, then not enough and find out while im in labor... you know?
And in my last hospital... my doctor and the nurses NEVER gave us any of this information... no packets... and i am thinking about trying to get my tour done sooner than later (maybe like 20 weeks?) so if there is anything I am REALLY concerned about... i may have time to find another place to give birth...
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  #15  
March 7th, 2013, 06:53 PM
Sk8ermaiden's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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Location: Houston, TX
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Is there an ICAN chapter in your area? I realize you do not sound like a cesarean mom, but ICAN people generally have this information about the hospitals. If you sent an inquiry they might help you out. I know in my city we wouldn't let you into the yahoo group, but they would likely collect the information you wanted and email it to you.

Or, are you using a doula or childbirth educator? They generally have the skinny too.
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  #16  
March 7th, 2013, 06:56 PM
kelbert's Avatar a.k.a. Kelli
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Oh wow.. I am going to have to copy all these questions. I have been slacking on this part. I will do a tour later and I WILL have a long list of questions.
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  #17  
March 8th, 2013, 09:06 AM
AIK112018's Avatar Elizabeth
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 1,244
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sk8ermaiden View Post
Is there an ICAN chapter in your area? I realize you do not sound like a cesarean mom, but ICAN people generally have this information about the hospitals. If you sent an inquiry they might help you out. I know in my city we wouldn't let you into the yahoo group, but they would likely collect the information you wanted and email it to you.

Or, are you using a doula or childbirth educator? They generally have the skinny too.
What is an ICAN Chapter? No I haven't had a c-section... and I cant find any doulas or educators around here...
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  #18  
March 8th, 2013, 09:30 AM
CARLACB's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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I was supposed to have my hospital tour for Makhari's birth but the day before I was supposed to go, I was in the same hospital giving birth lol I will do this one earlier because even though I will be at the same hospital, I missed out on the experience.
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