Baby and mother-friendly hospitals: All you need to know

Maternity hospitals are the essential stop for mother and baby in the labor and delivery journey. What are the criteria to choose a maternity hospital? What is a mother-friendly hospital? What is a baby-friendly hospital? And how do these classifications affect labor and delivery? Find out the answers in this article.

Nisreen Nemer
Published on:Aug 11th 2022 |Updated on:Apr 10th 2024
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How to choose a maternity hospital

  • Setting priorities

This is where the expecting mother needs to decide what’s important for her, whether is it following a trend on social media, or the kind of medical care and prioritizing natural birth.

  • Learning the hospital’s protocols

Finding out what protocols the hospital implements during birth and labor, is essential while setting the birth plan and choosing the maternity hospital.

  • Putting a birth plan

Setting a birth plan with the help of the Doula, and discussing it with the OBGYN, early on, helps the mother in choosing the right hospital for her.

  • Choosing a hospital close to home

To make the trip to the hospital during labor as short as possible.

What do mother-friendly hospitals offer?

  • Freedom of mobility for the mom during labor.
  • Allowing the husband’s presence in the delivery room.
  • Letting the Doula be there during labor.
  • Allowing the use of natural pain management techniques, such as the birthing ball, and breathing techniques.
  • Letting the mom have some food while in labor.

What do baby-friendly hospitals offer?

  • Encouraging breastfeeding through these steps:
  • Allowing the mom to have the golden hour to practice skin-to-skin immediately after delivery.
  • Not giving the newborn formula unless there is a medical emergency that requires its use.
  • Guiding the mother through breastfeeding, by showing her the right feeding positions, baby latching, and the use of breast pumps.
  • Allowing room sharing.

Also, a hospital might provide the steps that a mother-friendly or baby-friendly hospital provides even without having official accreditations. This can only be found through researching the hospital’s protocols regarding delivery. Here comes the role of the Doula in helping the mom and guiding her in choosing the best maternity hospital for her delivery.

Check out Hospital bag for delivery checklist

Nisreen NemerDoula

Nisreen graduated as a registered nurse from Sharjah University and received her master’s degree in Public Health from Hamdan Smart University. She is a lactation specialist, AMANI childbirth educator, Certified from AMANI Childbirth in Saudi Arabia, and a Doula. With years of experience in woman’s health care and health education, especially the education of pregnant women, to help them be prepared for childbirth. Nisreen dedicates all her time to supporting women in their motherhood journey and makes sure she does her role as a birth companion perfectly. She is always there for her clients from the first contraction, until the baby is born. She is passionate about helping women through birth and breastfeeding and other steps in their motherhood journey.

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