Frequently Asked Questions
What does home birth cost?
My universal fee which covers evidence based care in the prenatal which includes basic prenatal labs, birth, and the postpartum period, nutritional expertise and guidance, herbs, nutritional supplements, home, birth kit, my 24 hours a day on call time from 37 weeks on, a trained assistant at the birth, and newborn care, newborn exam including filing birth certificates and any medication or emergency equipment if needed.
Do you have a payment plan?
Yes I do! I require $500 upon booking in with me and $500 minimum a month. All fees must be paid in full by 36 weeks. I will reduce the fee by $300 if you pay in full.
What is not included in the fee?
Your 20 week anatomy scan, referrals to other health professionals, and any blood work or testing other than basic prenatal labs (at 12-16 weeks and again at 28 weeks). Of course we will help guide you to get everything that you need.
Do you take insurance or Medicaid?
We do not take insurance directly however we have an insurance biller that will work with you and your insurance company to to attempt to successfully get reimbursement for you. Every company is different so we will refer yo to our biller. Medicaid is not reimbursed in Georgia.
Do you take VBAC, twins, or breech?
The short answer is yes and no. The longer answer is no two births or women are alike. Everyone is different and each case must be evaluated on an individual basis for risk and safety factors. As stated I practice evidence based care so each case is must be individually assed in order to provide the safest care. Current evidence shows that in most cases vaginal breech and VBAC birth is a safe option and in most cases safer than a c-section. Twins can be a little bit tricker depending on the type of twins that you are having. However statistically "most" women should be able to plan for a vaginal twin birth if they are committed to doing the work to stay healthy. That goes for all birthing women.
What is your experience?
If you have read my website you will see that I have been working with women in some capacity of natural health and reproductive health for close to 30 years. I am a medical herbalist, traditional naturopath, aromatherapist, an expert in plant nutrition science, and disaster relief medicine (all of which I have various certification and training/study in). I hold a degree in Midwifery Science for Midwives College of Utah and I am a CPM (Certified Professional Midwife). I will always be a student. I am thoroughly trained in life support, herbal emergency medicine, newborn and maternal resuscitation, I am a first responder, first aid, advanced midwifery and women's health complications, fetal and maternal assessment. I am an avid breech/twins/VBAC advocate and attendant therefor I stay up to date with current research, trainings, protocols ,and methods. I am an expert in disaster relief and low resource health care. I have caught babies, given maternal health care globally and built clinics, trained health care workers, created protocols, delivered health and wellness care in all corners of the globe. I have helped many heal themselves and take control of their health and wellness. Personally and with the organization I created (Sisters in Health) we given care to thousands women, children, men, and babies.
What is Evidence Based and Informed Midwifery Care?
"Evidence-based health care is the conscientious use of current best evidence in making decisions about the care of individual patients or the delivery of health services. How does this apply to my practice? I use the most current and up to date research and evidence in conjunction with my personal experience, expertise, and traditional/cultural medicine to formulate what I believe to be best practices. Informed care and shared decision making means that I present you with all of information and evidence that I have and you make the final decision about your care with my guidance. And I will always support your educated decisions even if I do not agree personally as long as you and your baby are safe and healthy.
Who comes to the birth with you?
At every birth that I attend I will bring a trained assistant and most likely a student. You will get a chance to meet them in the prenatal period. I am dedicated to training the next generation of Midwives so you will get an opportunity to be a part of that if you would like. My assistant and student has been trained by me in my approach and method to childbirth and emergency response.
What do you bring to a birth?
I come equipped with all the proper equipment, medications, and herbs you would need to safely manage any low risk birth or emergency situation. I carry anti hemorrhagic herbs and medications, dopplers and fetoscopes for heart tone and position assessment resuscitation equipment for mother and baby, IV set up and fluids, post partum medications if needed, suturing equipment (yes I will numb you completely first), emergency and shock supplies, and all the basic comfort measures, herbs, oils, and nutrients you will need to have a safe and empowering birth.
Is home birth messy?
No not really. Part of what we do is tidy up and clean up after ourselves. Home birth in most cases is not very bloody and we make sure that we keep clean as we go. When we leave we will leave you with fresh linens on the bed and everything that was used will be washed and put in the dryer
Is home birth safe?
Absolutely it is. Home birth is safe for most women. Most women are or can be low risk if they put in the work. Each birthing person is assessed on an individual holistic basis for risk factors. Just because western medicine has labled you "high risk" does not mean that you are forever high risk. Out of hospital birth happens all over the globe with great statistics and results. Here are some great resources. The maternal mortality and newborn mortality rate in Georgia is the highest in the nation. African American women are at a 4-5x higher risk for not only death but complications in the prenatal and postpartum period. Home birth and Midiwfery care is how we change this.
What if there is an emergency?
The Midwife Model of Care takes into consideration the whole person and anything that may be unique to them that may come up in labor. We watch and wait. We watch you go through your phases of labor assessing at every turn. We wait patiently and quietly as your body naturally goes through the peaks and valleys of labor. We have strict protocols when it comes to assessing baby and mother during labor. We are trained to intervene early. Midwifery care during labor and birth is active care. Not passive care like in the medical complex. That means we are working together as a team to ensure the most empowering and safe birth possible. This is a hallmark of Midwifery care. We do not wait until there is a huge emergency we step in (in most cases) before that happens. I am trained and compitent in handling all of the emergencies that could come up in labor and birth. If it is out of my practice protocols or comfort zone I will not hesitate to transfer to a higher level of care. The safety of you and your baby are my number one priority.
What does home birth look like and what does the Midwife do?
What we do at the birth...
Asses baby and mother through clinical tasks such as heart auscultation, vital signs, and visual assessment.
Quiet but constant monitoring through listening and watching of the labor pattern and maternal behavior.
Assisting with the flow of labor and only intervening if it is evidenced based and immediately necessary.
Follow strict safety protocols.
Assisting with the changes in labor through presenting maternal option's, comfort measures, nutrition, hydration, and overall emotional and physical well being.
Follow strict protocols for gentle hands off birth.
Assist with the birth if wanted/needed, assist in mother controlling her own birth, or assist in other loved one catching baby.
Follow strict emergency and complication protocols.
Follow strict protocols for The Golden Hour after birth.
Carefully monitor bleeding and vital signs and use appropriate herbs and medications when needed.
Assist with delivery of the placenta.
Support and guidance for breast feeding.
Support and guidance for the partner and family.
Full newborn exam appropriate paperwork for birth certificate
Offer newborn medication and informed consent
Make sure family feel comfortable with the PP period
Feed, clean, and tuck birthing person into bed.
Tidy up, start laundry, and leave the house cleaner than when we found it.
What does prenatal and post partum care look like?
We follow a typical prenatal/post partum schedule for visits. Visits are 45 mins- 1 hour and focus on you are your needs. I believe that proper nutrition and lifestyle modifications are the key to a healthy pregnancy, postpartum period, and overall heath in the future. We will spend as much time as you need helping you step into this new way of living with new needs as a mother. This is a "typical" prenatal schedule however this can be customized to meet your needs.
Up until 30 weeks: monthly
30-36 weeks: every other week
36-42 weeks: weekly
42+weeks: bi weekly if needed
24 hours: in home visit
6 week visit
How do I contact you with my pregnancy questions and concerns?
I am on call 24/7 for you starting at 37 weeks. During those times you can text or call me at any time with any concerns and when labor starts I will come to you when you feel you need me there. If it is early no problem I will tuck you into bed and be there when you need me. Before the 37 weeks you can text me and I will respond M-F 9-5. If there is an emergency you can call me anytime.
Do you recommend a Doula or Child Birth Education?
Yes without a doubt I advise that you have both. I understand finances may hinder that. My favorite Childbirth Education Class is online and affordable. I absolutely advise you getting a doula OR have one of your best friends or sisters go through an online doula training to get the basics. Anyone that you trust can be your birth companion. We can recommend childbirth education. These are 3 incredible education and information sources. We do ask that you talk to us before hiring your Doula.
What test's do I have to do
This is your birth and you are an intelligent birther. It is up to you to decide what is best for you. However due to the increase of women coming into home birth I am requiring basic prenatal bloodwork be done 2 times in pregnancy and more if something comes up (it is all covered in your fee). Through informed care, shared decision making, and informed consent you will choose what tests beyond that and interventions you want. I will guide you with evidence based care, research, and experience. You will be given education and informed consent for every decision you have to make and ultimately those are your decisions. I will guide you with evidence and experience. In the case of transfer it is important to have basic blood work , diabetes screening, and GBS testing.
Do you rent birth pools or bring them to the birth?
This is the tub that we use.
What is the legal status of Georgia Midwives?
Georgia has not given a Midwifery license in over 50 years. The CPM (Certified Professional Midwife ) credential is not recognized in Georgia. There is no law, regulations, rules, or formal certification for Midwives in the state of Georgia. Georgia has a deep history of Midwifery. Georgia hospitals have the highest maternal and neonatal mortality in the nation. The Midwives in Georgia want to end that. There is a current push to draft regulations and laws so that Midwives can in Georgia can acquire registration or state licensure if they please.
A large international study led by McMaster University shows that low risk pregnant women who intend to give birth at home have no increased chance of the baby's perinatal or neonatal death compared to other low risk women who intend to give birth in a hospital. The study also concluded that of the 500,000 women total those who birthed at home had a 30-50% chance less of a c-section. There were no negative outcomes (maternal or neonatal death) and it concluded that in a low risk healthy pregnancy the hospital is not a safer place to birth.