When I had my first this did not exist lol. My first labour felt very traumatic and clinical and would rather not be screaming and panicking on a bed this time. I am hoping for a pool with gas and air, would I opt for a birth centre? What do they look like and what do they provide?
Mine is connected to the actual maternity unit so easy to move if there is an emergency.
They are midwife led so quite strict on the type of pregnancy they accept but I had my daughter at one & LOVED it!
It was connected to the labour ward like yours but had a completely different atmosphere. Much more relaxed & smaller so more attention for you. I cannot recommend a water birth enough, it was amazing & really helped with the pain.
As a rule the only pain relief of offer will be gas & air or pethodine so something to think about.
We've since moved & my new unit is not connected to a labour ward so it'll be a 15 mile ambulance trip if any issues arise 😐
They are midwifery led, so usually they have a strict criteria, most if not all rooms will have birthing pool, will only intermittently monitor baby with a sonicaid, encourage changing positions and using mats/ birthing stools etc and should be a relaxed atmosphere.
They can only offer entonox and possibly pethidine/ diamorphine for pain relief.
You should ask what their transfer rate is like, but it's also reassuring that you are connected to the labour ward.
I've booked at a stand alone unit this time, transfer time is just under 15mins via ambulance and it does make me slightly anxious but I'm confident I won't need to worry about that.
I had my lg at our local Midwifery led unit. Thankfully the one closest to me is the floor below the labour ward so if anything happened if be in the same building.
Personally I loved it, I had a huge en suite room, hubby could come and go at any time and there was a sofa bed for him. All the medical equipment is concealed behind cupboards but right there if needed, so it doesn't seem as clinical.
Like others have said you need to be low risk and it's pretty limited pain relief wise but if you decide you need something stronger you can get moved.
The only problem really is they can't guarantee it, when you turn up they check there is room and that you're progressing normally before they can say. That is understandable though.
If my local unit was further (the others associated with my maternity hospital are a 30min ambulance ride away) I might reconsider for all the just in cases but I'm pretty risk averse.
All in all I found it a great experience- well as far as labour is great- and am hoping for the same again this time.
I laboured in our birth centre when I was having DD but then my waters went when I got to 8cm and there was thick meconium. I ended up being bluelighted to the main hospital. The birth centre was wonderful. They had a pool in every room and a pull down double bed so your partner can stay with you overnight. The midwives had far more time for me and even gave some lunch to hubby. It was perfect. The main hospital was not so good so I'm hoping to manage the whole thing at the birth centre this time.
Even if I knew I'd end up needing bluelighting I'd still go for it i think.
Our birth centre sounds very different! It is a house that has three rooms for birthing. Each room has a private bathroom with jetted tub. It is furnished exactly like a house but is equipped with all equipment midwives are required to have at a home birth. It is located a few blocks from the hospital. It is run privately so you have to book in and pay $450 to use it. Guests have full access to the kitchen, living space, laundry, yard, etc. I really want a home birth with baby #2, but my OH is really uncomfortable with the idea because we live in the country and are 30 min from the hospital. He works in pediatric health care and sees lots of horrible things so he is always worried about what could go wrong, so we will be using the birth centre as a compromise between a home birth and a hospital birth.
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