How To Choose An Obstetrician

Choosing an obstetrician can be a difficult process if you have never experienced obstetric care before and simply want the best for yourself and your unborn baby. However, by following the steps below, you can choose someone who suits all your needs.

Make A Long List Of Potential Choices

As a first step, you should create a long list of all the potential obstetricians that you are interested in. Better Health explains that the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists is the best starting place to look. You can also ask your GP, search online for obstetricians in your area or ask friends and family members which obstetrician they used. At this stage, you don't need to know much — just that they work in your town or city. If you have specific requirements, such as preferring a female doctor or one who is familiar with your own culture, then you should filter out ones who don't suit your needs at this stage.

Narrow Down Your Options

Next, it's time to start making your shortlist. One of the best ways to do this is by word of mouth or by reading online reviews. Online reviews can be useful, as they help you to notice any red flags, as well as anything that previous patients particularly liked. However, word of mouth is especially useful, as people often have strong opinions on obstetric care and will be happy to recommend (or warn you away from!) an obstetrician they used. PatientPop explains that word of mouth is very important in this field of medicine, where so much depends on the doctor's personality and ability to make you feel comfortable. You might also choose to look further into the details at this stage, and remove any doctor who does not suit your needs for other reasons — for example, you find them too expensive, they don't take your insurance or they are not located in a convenient place.

Arrange An Initial Consultation

Setting up an initial consultation is a great way of finding out whether a particular obstetrician's personality suits your needs. As Belly Belly describes, this is a good time to ask them about their philosophies around childbirth — for example, what they believe about pain relief, natural birth and medical interventions — to see if their opinions are compatible with yours. You'll also get a good feel for their general manner. Are they friendly? Do you feel respected and listened to? Don't be afraid to walk away from an obstetrician who doesn't make you feel good or who you get a bad feeling from.

At the end of this process, you are likely to have found at least one obstetrician you are happy to work with. Don't worry about being too picky, as it's important that you find someone you look forward to working with at this exciting time in your life.