I happened to switch 3 doctors in 9 months of my pregnancy; different doctor in different trimester and that is not how I wanted it. Pregnancy is a beautiful and unforgettable 40 weeks journey; made or marred by the doctors you choose. I had to change doctors, not because I wasn’t comfortable with them, but because of some unavoidable situations. I delivered in Gurgaon, which was a fairly new area for me and my family, that made it even more difficult for us to decide where to deliver. We got in touch with friends in and around Delhi/Gurgaon; each had a different experience to share about the various famous hospitals. We searched the internet; also checked the Facebook/google reviews of the hospitals and contacted the moms who delivered there (this was a slow process; but we got honest reviews from them). My Ob-gynae was a visiting doctor; she was attached to most of the top-rated hospitals in Gurgaon, but left it on me to decide where to deliver. We visited two of the hospitals that we had shortlisted; did a hospital tour and then came to decide where we wanted to have our baby. It is important to have a good doctor first; hospital can be decided after choosing the doctor. Your task will be simplified if the doctor himself/herself suggests you the hospital.
The factors that could be kept in mind while deciding on to the hospital for your delivery
1. Proximity to where you live, it is advisable to choose a hospital that you can reach in 20-30 minutes maximum. Please consider the traffic at the oddest hours, babies come unannounced and I am sure you wouldn’t want to deliver in a car, stuck in traffic; that would make a great birth story to tell though!
2. Infrastructure, by infrastructure I mean the hospital should be able to handle any emergency that may arise and also should have in-house or empaneled reputed blood-banks, laboratory etc.
3. Budget, of course to choose a hospital that promises to be in your budget
4. It is also important to check with your insurance company which hospitals and up to what limit is covered by the company.
5. Low C-section rate or a higher vaginal birth rate : If you are keen on having a normal delivery then this may be a thing to check beforehand.
6. Old hospital vs New hospital; old hospitals have all the infrastructure established and set. The staff is familiar with the system and accustomed to the operating procedures; also the staff may be lackadaisical. New hospitals have their own set of challenges, having said that, a new hospital would always try to deliver what they promise.
Questions you may look at asking your prospective hospital before finalizing it
1. Whether the hospital offers special birthing/delivery packages? Two of the hospitals where we checked at had same package rate for C-section and normal deliveries, only one extra room night was added to the cost of C-section as one generally needs to stay one extra night in C-section deliveries.
2. Are consumables included or excluded in the package?
3. Are there any hidden charges; like for printing of reports, registration etc.? I was told that many hospitals have these charges.
4. Do you allow the spouse or a family member to be present in delivery room?
5. Who can stay with me in the hospital?
6. What kind of post-natal assistance is given in the hospital?
7. Does the hospital have lactation consultants?
8. Does the hospital have a neonatologist (a pediatrician who specializes in new born care)
9. How long will I have to stay, in both the cases (C-section/normal)?
10. Would the siblings be allowed in the labor and delivery room?
11. What is the nurse and patient ratio?
These are the things that I could think of! If there is anything that you feel is missing please comment and let me know.
Hope this is useful for “parents-to-be” who are stuck in deciding the hospital for delivery.
Want to know where I delivered? click here
Have you packed your hospital bag? Not yet, click here to know what to pack!