The Doula Network

Standards of Care

Each doula’s services and fees will vary according to her training and experience, however all doulas listed on this site have agreed to the following minimum standards of care.  Please contact each doula individually to learn more specifics about her fees and services offered.

 

Doula Network of the Capital Region Birth Doula Practice Standards

Prenatal Care

We will provide at least three prenatal visits, which will include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • establishing a relationship with the mother and family;
  • education in choices in childbirth (setting, attendants, interventions, etc.);
  • parents’ responsibility for birth;
  • breastfeeding education;
  • planning for the postpartum period;
  • referral to other support providers when necessary (classes, support groups, midwives, doctors, counselors, etc.);
  • discussion of general well-being and health of mother and family unit;
  • meeting the other birth attendants when possible.

 

Birth Support

We believe in continuous labor support. This means labor support providers will:

  • be on call during the “birth month”;
  • arrange for a back-up doula in case the need arises, and ensure that the client has met the back-up doula before the time of birth;
  • be with the laboring mother at home and/or in the planned place of birth;
  • be advocates for the family with their health care providers, but will not make decisions for the family;
  • be committed to guiding women and families throughout the process of birth and have the required flexibility and support in their own lives to provide this level of commitment.

 

Postpartum Care

We will provide postpartum support which will include the following:

  • immediate postpartum support in the birth setting (getting family settled, help with initial breastfeeding, ensuring parental wishes for baby care are respected, etc.);
  • at least three follow-up visits with the family;
  • referral to other support providers when necessary;
  • availability for phone consultations for at least six weeks postpartum.

 

Doula Network of the Capital Region Postpartum Doula Practice Standards

Prenatal Care

We will provide a minimum of one to two prenatal visits in the client’s home, which will include but are not limited to the following:

  • establishing a relationship with the mother and family;
  • education on topics pertaining to the newborn period;
  • breastfeeding education;
  • referrals for other support providers when necessary (midwives, birth doulas, classes, therapists, etc.);
  • crafting a plan for support during the postpartum period;
  • discussion of the general well being and health of the mother and family;
  • phone and email support during the pregnancy for issues pertaining to the postpartum period.

 

Postpartum Care

We agree to care for the family in their home for the contracted time of service.  The agreed upon services will be discussed prenatally and may include:

  • emotional support for the entire family;
  • physical comfort suggestions to help with healing after the birth;
  • breastfeeding support;
  • instruction in all baby basics including but not limited to: diapering options, burping, swaddling, bathing and soothing techniques;
  • household organization including help in setting up nursing and diapering stations around the house, organizing baby clothes, etc;
  • help with care of the home including washing dishes, doing laundry, and cooking nutritious meals;
  • help with sibling adjustment;
  • advice on appropriate developmental milestones;
  • brief periods of childcare so that the parents can nap or take a short break;
  • phone and/or email support for a minimum of 6 weeks after the contracted time of service.

 

Services NOT offered by birth or postpartum doulas:

  • We do not provide medical advice or care but can refer the client to appropriate medical care providers if they so desire.
  • We do not do heavy cleaning but can refer the client to local cleaning agencies.
  • We also do not act as a nanny or babysitter; our job is to teach and guide the client so that they will feel confident in their new roles as parents. We can assist with finding appropriate childcare for after our postpartum time together is over.

*Notice:  The Doula Network of the Capital Region  is a networking and promotional organization whose purpose is to educate local families about the services doulas provide and to promote the mutual advancement of the interests of its members.  As such, Doula Network of the Capital Region can not and does not accept any responsibility for the individual conduct of its members, and any contracts between a member and her client are exclusive to the member and her client.

We welcome positive and constructive feedback.  Please send your feedback to The Doula Network of the Capital Region at: thedoulanetwork@gmail.com