Your Choice of Provider

Many parents choose a maternity care provider based on recommendations of friends or relatives or from a list provided by their insurance company. If you are a healthy, low risk pregnant person, does it matter whether you choose a physician or midwife to care for you during pregnancy? Let’s look at satisfaction with maternity care and birth experiences. A new study (Birth, September 2018) of 1900 women found that the odds of having a high level of satisfaction were three times higher for those that received care by a midwife. Midwives tend to use approaches that rely less on technology and interventions. Furthermore, another new study found that having midwives and obstetricians practicing together at the same hospital improved maternal and infant outcomes, even among the women attended by physicians (Birth, November 2018). In these interprofessional facilities, pregnant people were less likely to have induction or augmentation of labor using Pitocin, less likely to have a cesarean, and more likely to have a successful vaginal birth after a prior cesarean (VBAC). It seems that the presence of midwives on staff influenced the care provided by all the health care providers and the result was better outcomes for moms and babies. Check out the organizational structure at your local birthing hospitals. Midwives are a great choice for most women.

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