Maternity Care Options: 4 Important Things You May Not Have Considered
Whether you’re planning your first child or your fourth, the relationship you have with the person who will deliver your baby can have a huge impact.
Not just on your physical health, but also on your emotional wellbeing which is one of the major contributors to a positive birth experience.
In your most vulnerable moments during pregnancy and childbirth, you want full confidence that the medical professional caring for you will act in your best interest.
Their understanding of your medical history, your fears and your personal preferences can make all the difference. Not just in their ability to make quick and informed medical decisions, but in being able to intuitively respond to your needs in the moments that matter.
Shared maternity care options vs obstetrics-led care
If you’ve done any amount of Googling around your maternity care options, you’ll have likely started weighing the pros and cons of shared care vs private obstetrics care.
The cost savings of shared care options (where you see an alternating mix of midwives and obstetricians) are attractive to expectant parents, but can present a number of hidden challenges that can have significant consequences.
The unique benefit of private obstetrics is simple – continuity of care – but its underlying implications for your pregnancy and birth experience may not be immediately obvious.
As with any service, when evaluating maternity care options it can be easy to be persuaded by the opinions of well-meaning family and friends and lose sight of what’s important…
The comfort and safety of a trusted relationship with a specialist who is truly invested in your pregnancy.
Why choose a private obstetrician as your preferred maternity care option?
A broad body of research demonstrates that two factors are key to achieving the best health outcomes for mothers and their babies: continuity of care and the right expertise.
As specialist pregnancy doctors, obstetricians provide both of these, along with the peace of mind that the right decisions will be made at the right time, in the face of any eventuality or complication.
Here’s 4 important things you may not have considered that demonstrate the value of a dedicated private obstetrician over shared care maternity options:
1. They have specialist medical expertise not just training
One of the key benefits of obstetrician-led care is that due to their many years of training, obstetricians have a more extensive set of skills and medical knowledge.
There may be a perception that there is more likely to be “intervention” in a pregnancy or labour managed by an obstetrician. Part of the reason this exists is that, in the case where medical assistance is necessary, it is the obstetrician who has the expertise and ability to take action when required.
In the case of shared care models, you may be referred to an obstetrician you’ve never met before and there is a chance that important information may be lost as it is transferred back and forth between medical professionals.
The personal touch and discerning eye of a dedicated obstetrician who has cared for you for the duration of your pregnancy means that they can respond personally and immediately to any complications as they arise.
When something doesn’t feel right, or you’re at your most vulnerable in the twilight hours of labour, being able to trust in the experience and capability of a doctor you know well is everything. And their ability to make the right judgement calls under pressure is vital.
With the recent introduction of affordable private obstetrics options like Jelly Bean Maternity in Greenslopes, expectant parents can now receive pregnancy care from a dedicated private obstetrician whilst saving up to 75% on out-of-pocket expenses.
2. They will help you to feel safe, informed and in control
The constantly rotating nature of public hospital and shared care maternity options, can make it difficult to build trust with those monitoring you during your pregnancy.
This can mean little niggling worries go unspoken (and unchecked) and you may feel unsure about whether the choices you’re making are best for you and your baby.
Feeling nervous, embarrassed or uncomfortable talking about pregnancy or delivery is totally normal – but feeling safe enough to express your thoughts/concerns with the medical professional caring for you is incredibly important in helping you build your confidence as childbirth approaches.
Having one specialist to guide you and provide continuity of care relieves anxiety by allowing you to build a trusting relationship with them. This relationship leads to more honest communication and the kind of individualised care that ensures you feel like the empowered and informed parent you are…not just patient no. #374.
3. They will make informed decisions and know your preferences
A recent study found new mums reported that one of the most important determinants of a positive birth experience was how well their medical history and personal preferences were understood by the team delivering their baby.
Shared care models in both public and private settings can fail to effectively adhere or respond to your individual needs due to lack (or inaccuracy) of information. They rely on the ability of busy medical teams to convey both context and data in a way that can be acted upon, sometimes with very little time.
Your birth plan, tolerance for pain, fears and hopes are all an important part of the process, but not all medical professionals may respect that…especially if they don’t know you personally.
Having your own private obstetrician alleviates this concern. Seeing the same specialist throughout your pregnancy means that they are invested in your wellbeing, both physically and emotionally. They’ll know you like a good friend and you’ll feel confident, during the most difficult moments, that they’ll be a true ally in the delivery room.
4. They’ll ensure the best possible health outcomes for you and your baby
Current evidence endorses obstetrician-led care as the safest for mothers and babies across a range of health outcomes.
The Australian Medical Association recommends that “models of care should not result in situations where obstetricians only become aware of a problem once it has become acute or serious.”
Dedicated private obstetrics care provides direct access to a trusted specialist who carefully monitors your baby’s development. During 15+ appointments across trimesters, they develop important context which enables them to see emerging patterns and respond to concerns quickly.
This means that you can feel confident knowing that you and your baby’s health is being closely observed by a professional you trust, who is highly experienced and can provide informed advice right when it’s most needed.
Affordable Private Pregnancy Care in Greenslopes
If you’re growing your family, a private obstetrician can make all the difference when it comes to ensuring a positive pregnancy experience and healthy delivery.
With eligible private health insurance and Medicare rebates, you can access all the benefits of standard private maternity care and enjoy continuity of care during pregnancy and delivery at one of Brisbane’s most easily accessible hospitals, Greenslopes Private, for just $1,500* out-of-pocket with Jelly Bean Maternity.
For more information and to check your eligibility, send us an enquiry using the form below.
Author – Dr Bryan Kenny
Obstetrician & Gynaecologist
B App Sc Optometry (Hons) MBBS (Hons Class I) FRANZCOG
Bryan is a specialist Obstetrician and Gynaecologist practicing at Jelly Bean Maternity in Greenslopes. He believes that being a part of the wonderful journey of pregnancy and childbirth is a fantastic privilege and has witnessed just how big a difference Obstetricians can make for mothers and their babies if problems do arise during pregnancy and labour. A father of three boys himself, he has a keen interest in general obstetrics and a strong focus on providing exceptional continuity of care to his patients.