February 28, 2011

Broken Schemes

I have mixed feelings in regard to the medical community. I appreciate them when they are needed. And am frustrated by their covert pricing structure, cover-my-butt "you need X procedure" so I don't get sued doctors, and personnel who refuse to acknowledge that hospital staff don't know everything...and they have bad days just like the rest of us...and they make mistakes...sometimes lethal ones. I have a fundamental belief that I know more about my body than anyone else. Can a doctor guide me? Yes. Do they always recommend the best treatment? No. Their actions are dictated by insurance companies, government medical reimbursements, FDA politics, drug companies, etc.

The OB in charge of Baby Girl's ultrasound read the Cardiologist's report from last Friday this morning and gave me a call. She's still concerned that I don't want to deliver in a hospital. To her credit, she did suggest a couple of hospitals that have both nurse-midwives and also a NICU. But still...I'd have to give up my midwife and birth center. And that disappoints me.

I talked to my midwife, Heike, this afternoon. I told her about my scheme to deliver at the birth center instead of at home. I had it all planned out. Maybe she thought it was a good plan...or not...but she did tell me why it wouldn't work. Knowing that Baby Girl has potential heart issues, the hospital would involve child protective services if we carried out my plan. Then I wouldn't be involved in any of the health decisions for Baby Girl. Tymon would be just as guilty. She mentioned another couple of problems...but this is the main one.

What I don't understand is why the same medical professionals who would support me if I decided to have an abortion (which I will never choose to do), would also condemn me for choosing to not deliver a child with a heart issue in a hospital. Huh? What do they care?

Heike presented a scenario that I think could work, though. We have some of the best medical care in the country in our own backyard. I think, if Baby Girl's branch arteries don't grow bigger, that I will deliver at the UW Medical Center. Heike would act as my doula. Baby's transfer to Children's Hospital will be easy. It's in the same neighborhood and the two hospitals are partners. I believe we're probably looking at a heart surgery soon after birth and Children's is the best in the region. So I think this could work.

After experiencing the absolute fabulous-ness of home births, I decided that if I could help it, I would never deliver anywhere else....unless it was necessary. Now I'm finding out how serious I was about that statement. It's so not needed for me. But it is for Baby Girl. And thus lie my broken schemes.

6 Riveting COMMENTS:

  1. Heike sent me to the nurse midwives at UW. They were also fantastic and totally debunked my medical, hospital stereotypes. The midwife (cindy)sat down with me when I first got there in tears and completely listened to my story of how I got there. She even came down to see us the next time she was working. I've done my follow up there and have been really pleased. So basically I am saying this isn't the worst option out there!

  2. I think you're right. Hopefully you can still have the kind of birth experience you want with the help of your midwife, and it sounds like Baby will be safer.

  3. Bridget, I would recommend that you take tours of the different hospitals in the area and what they offer. All hospitals that have NICU's also have the ability to transfer your daughter to Childrens Hospital.

    Amy Lynne was born at Evergreen and they did a fabulous job with keeping her alive. Also, when it was needed, she was taken to Childrens.

    I know hospitals have different ideas with the birthing process and some offer better situations than others. You have the time, I would tour not only their birthing areas, but also the NICU's. They will have your baby first before she's taken to Childrens.

    I've had all 4 of my children need NICU services, and I can tell you that they are not created equal. Choose one that you feel comfortable with.

    You are in my prayers.


  4. I really appreciate your thoughts on the medical community, and I totally agree with you. I LOVE natural medicine, but appreciate modern medicine as well. I have all c-sections, so I have never had the option of a home birth, so my comments are fairly one-sided I guess. I do have to say though that since you will have to deliver in a hospital I think the most important thing to do is find an OB that you trust, and who wants what you want. My OB's philosophy is that this is MY pregnancy, and he will only intervene when it becomes medically necessary. So, I have forgone different tests and shots and done several triathlons this pregnancy without any complaint from him. I totally get you on the abortion thing, but I guess if it was me, I would really like to know that there was a whole NICU there down the hall waiting for me should I need them. Anyway, I think you are a GREAT mom and I know this will work out well for you! Good luck!

  5. I hate to say it, because I know it does matter, but does it really matter? In the long run a healthy baby is more important than where she is born.

    Love and prays to you and your family!

  6. Amen. Glad it's not me, but I'm sure it'll all be fine. At least you'll have an additional experience to share in the mother's lounge--they'll believe you more when you say, "home births are the way to go if you have a choice."


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