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Besides your husband, your obstetrician will be your new best friend during your pregnancy journey. Good prenatal care is an important ingredient in making a healthy baby. You'll want to choose an obstetrician who will provide not just sound medical advice but who is patient and willing to listen to your concerns.
Here's a checklist to help you along:
1.How far and long are you willing to travel to get to his clinic? (Remember: You'll have to visit him once a month for the first and most of the second trimester; once a fortnight from week 28 and once a week in the last month.)
2.Which hospital will he deliver in? (Note: Obstetricians who are based in hospitals are likely to deliver only in those hospitals.)
3.Do you prefer a male or female obstetrician? (Hint: Female, if you're shy.)
4.What do other mummies think of him/her? (Talk to friends or read reviews on the Internet)
5.What is the waiting time like for his/her clinic? (Check by dropping by the clinic during the times you are likely to visit.)
6.What are his/her costs and payment terms?
7.Do you feel comfortable with him/her? (Visit a few obstetricians in the early stages before making your decision.)
8.Should I choose the hospital first? (Government/restructured hospitals are more cost-effective. Some high-risk pregnancies such as low-lying placenta will benefit from access to facilities in a hospital.)
9.Do you have the time to wait at restructured hospitals? (As they handle more patients, including subsidised and private patients and higher-risk pregnancies, the waiting time is longer.)
10.Is the gynae supportive of natural birth?
11.Is he or she supportive of alternative methods like waterbirthing or hypnobirthing?
12.If you have pre-existing medical conditions such as diabetes or high blood pressure, does your doctor have experience in handling possible complications arising from these?