Starting a family is an exciting time.
From the moment you get confirmation that you’re pregnant, you should start thinking about your antenatal care.
If you have private health insurance and you choose to use it, your doctor will refer you to a private obstetrician early in your pregnancy. Your obstetrician will see you regularly over the three trimesters of your pregnancy. He or she will monitor both your health and your baby’s development.
Many pregnant women find it reassuring to have the continuity of care provided by the one medical professional. Their obstetrician becomes a trusted confidante and go-to source for advice about the changes to their body and their baby. It’s also comforting to have a trusted obstetrician by your side if complications arise. Especially if medical intervention, such as a caesarean section, is necessary.
Some women may have a preference for a female obstetrician. Private health insurance allows for this personal choice. And some women feel strongly about knowing the obstetrician they see during the pregnancy will be with them for the birth. Most obstetricians have a back-up to cover scheduled holidays and personal commitments. You’re likely to be introduced to this person prior to your due date if your obstetrician plans to be away.
Continuity of care with the same caregiver from early pregnancy through to labour, birth and six weeks after birth can have significant and lasting health benefits for women, their babies and families.
Studies have also shown that women receiving continuity of care are more likely to:
- discuss their antenatal and postnatal concerns
- attend antenatal education programs
- give birth without pain killers
- feel well prepared and supported during labour
- feel prepared for child care.
Your obstetrician will talk to you about which hospital you want to go to, your expectations for the birth and how you feel about pain relief and intervention during labour or delivery.
You can also use your private health insurance throughout your pregnancy to support your overall health and wellbeing. You might want to see a dietician to ensure a healthy pregnancy. Or incorporate physiotherapy or hydrotherapy into your physical wellbeing.
Private health insurance gives you greater choice and control about how and where you will have your baby. You can find out more about your health care options with Defence Health, give us a call on 1800 335 425.