Maybe this is your first-time interviewing homebirth midwives or maybe you are looking for a new midwife because your previous one didn’t mesh with you, or your beloved midwife is going to be gone when this baby is due. No matter the circumstances I hope this list helps you find the perfect midwife for you.
Why have a homebirth?
There are so many reasons to consider homebirth if you are healthy and baby is healthy. Personally, I choose homebirth because I want to be in the comfort of my own home. Hospitals are full of sick people, and I would much rather bring my baby into this world in my home than a germ filled hospital. With a homebirth the mother is much more in control of what position she is in, where she is, who is there and what is happening. There is not the push for medications or vaccines for Mom and baby.
Types of Midwives
The types of midwives available in your area is going to depend on what your state allows. In general, there are 3 types of midwives, certified nurse midwives, certified professional midwives and traditional midwives.
Certified nurse midwives (CNMs) may do home births, but generally they work in the hospital or birthing centers connected to hospitals. They have gone to school for nursing and then went on for additional training as a midwife. Generally, CNMs are more medical minded.
Certified professional midwives (CPMs) preside over homebirths and may also work in a standalone birth center. Depending on your state laws they may or may not be licensed on top of being certified. There are several different routes to becoming a CPM. Some may attend school and do an apprenticeship while others work with a qualified preceptor who signs off on her skills.
Traditional midwives are midwives who choose not to be certified or get their license for a variety of reasons.
Homebirth Midwife Interview Questions
Obviously what questions you ask in the midwife interview and which ones are important to you are going to depend on what type of birth you want for you and your baby. The following are the questions that I ask when interviewing a midwife:
About the midwife
- Why did you become a midwife?
- What is your training?
- Are you trained in neonatal resuscitation?
- How long have you been a midwife?
- How many births have you attended?
- Have you ever lost a mother or baby?
- What is your transfer rate?
- What is your C-section rate?
- What would risk me out of your care?
- Have you ever missed a birth?
- What is your policy on multiples?
- What is your policy on breech babies?
- Do you have a student and/or assistant?
- Will I be able to be meet them before hand?
- Do you have a backup?
- Will I be able to meet them before hand?
- What is the gestation window I have to be in to have my baby at home with you attending?
In the case of transfer
- Do you stay and act as a doula if a transfer is necessary?
- How long do you stay?
- Do you have a preferred hospital?
- Do you have a relationship with any of the local hospitals?
- Do you require any tests of Mom or baby?
- Glucose test?
- Group B strep?
- Are you fine with using a fetoscope or pinard horn?
- Do you require cervical checks?
- Do you offer water birth?
- Do you have a tub I can rent?
- What do I need for my birth kit?
- What do you bring to a birth?
- Do you observe the magic hour?
- Do you do delayed cord clamping?
- May I keep my placenta?
- Do you do placenta encapsulation?
- Do you require any of the newborn screenings?
- Do you offer newborn screenings?
- Do you help with breastfeeding?
- What does your appointment schedule look like?
- What postnatal appointments are at my home?
- What is your fee and what is included?
- May I deny the vitamin k, erythromycin and hepatitis b vaccine?
- How do you feel about me using herbs and homeopathy?
Did I miss any of the questions that you ask when interviewing for you homebirth midwife? Let me know in the comments.