You need to talk to the doctor/midwife face-to-face
Trying to find a VBAC supportive health care provider can be a (very, very) difficult process. Understandably, some women choose to call various providers rather than meet with them face to face. This woman’s experience illustrates the pitfalls of this method.
While VBAC is not a household term, it should be a familiar one among an OB’s front office staff. Perhaps this will prompt more providers to have a quick discussion with their staff about VBAC and maybe even pass out a copy of my Uterine Rupture Report so everyone who interacts with patients has a basic working knowledge of the topic.
Of course, this is the experience of one mom at one OB’s office and certainly doesn’t reflect on all the dedicated and intelligent individuals who work at OB offices throughout the world… simply this one.
For tips on interviewing care providers, including how to present yourself and specific questions to ask, go here.
Well, GREAT little anecdote for you all… In my search for an OB who will at least consider a VBA2C I ended up talking to a lady office assistant via phone yesterday. It went as follows:
Me: “Hi! *general convo* Is the doctor VBAC friendly?”
Lady: “Is she friendly?”
M: “No, will she consider a VBAC?”
L: “Um, what’s a VBAC?”
*I hear another nurse in the background, say ‘Yes, we do VBAC’*
M: “Wait, did she say you guys will do a VBAC?”
*Nurse in the background says to lady on the phone, ‘Wait, has she had a c-section?’*
L: “Um, have you had a c-section?”
M: “Yes, of course.”
L: “Oh, the other nurse said if you’ve had a c-section we can’t give you a VBAC.”
M: “Ok, I think you need to know, VBAC stands for Vaginal Birth After Cesarean. It would be impossible to have a VBAC without previously having had a c-section.”
L: “Oh! I didn’t know that!”
*general pleasantries and I hung up*
When you called your local health providers, what information did the front office staff share with you? One mom said, “We’ve done surveys in Orlando by calling all the OB offices in town (I know, huuuge undertaking, right?!). We have been told VBAC is illegal, that there is a 50% chance a baby will die, and all kinds of other outrageous statements, all from the person *answering the phone*.”
What do you think?
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What do you think? Leave a comment.
Jen Kamel is the founder of VBAC Facts, an educational, training and consulting firm. As a nationally recognized VBAC strategist and consumer advocate, she has been invited to present Grand Rounds at hospitals, served as an expert witness in a legal proceeding, and has traveled the country educating hundreds of professionals and highly motivated parents. She speaks at national conferences and has worked as a legislative consultant in various states focusing on midwifery legislation and regulations. She has testified multiple times in front of the California Medical Board and legislative committees on the importance of VBAC access and is a board member for the California Association of Midwives.