Prospect

Doula

A doula is an experienced, non-medical assistant who provides physical, emotional and informed choice support in prenatal care, during childbirth and during the postpartum period.

The Role of a Postpartum Doula

A postpartum doula (also known as a postnatal doula) is a woman who assists the new mother, baby, and the rest of her family within the first few weeks after the birth of the baby. Most importantly, she is committed to the belief that support and care of a new mother and her family during the early postpartum weeks has long-term beneficial effects on the mother's physical and mental health and on her confidence and competence as a parent. By mothering the new mother at this critical time, the postpartum doula helps to strengthen the entire family unit.

A postpartum doula (also known as a postnatal doula) is a woman who assists the new mother, baby, and the rest of her family within the first few weeks after the birth of the baby. Most importantly, she is committed to the belief that support and care of a new mother and her family during the early postpartum weeks has long-term beneficial effects on the mother's physical and mental health and on her confidence and competence as a parent. By mothering the new mother at this critical time, the postpartum doula helps to strengthen the entire family unit.

A postpartum doula may begin care in the home the day after the birth and provide services through the first six weeks postpartum. In some cases doula care can last several months or even up to a year postpartum – especially in cases when mothers are suffering from post partum depression, children with special needs requiring longer care, or when there are multiple infants.

Postpartum doulas must be good with children, patient, non-judgmental, and knowledgeable about newborn care and breastfeeding. The postpartum doula may offer the following:

  • Breastfeeding tips and support
  • Newborn care assistance
  • Maternal-child bonding support
  • Light housekeeping
  • Sibling care
  • Nutritious cooking for the mother
  • Errand running
  • Exploration of return to work (RTW) opportunities with employer
  • Information about community resources for new moms, recommended reading materials, and safety precautions in the home

They do not offer any form of medical advice regarding either the mother or the baby, nor do they perform any clinical tasks such as blood pressure checks or vaginal exams.

The Role of a Labour Doula

A labour doula is a continuous care provider for a woman in labour in various settings. She can also assist the parturient woman during transport from home to hospital or birth centre.

The following is a general description of what clients can expect from a certified labour doula. Typically, labour doulas meet with the parents in the second or third trimester of the pregnancy to become acquainted and to learn about prior birth experiences and the history of the current pregnancy. She may help develop a birth plan, teach relaxation, visualization, and breathing skills useful during labour. Most importantly, the labour doula will provide comfort, support, and information about birth options.

A labour doula can also help the expectant mother determine pre-labour from true labour and early labour from active labour. At a point determined by the woman in labour, the labour doula will come to her and assist by:

  • Helping her to rest and relax
  • Providing support for the woman's partner
  • Encouraging nutrition and fluids in early labour
  • Assisting her in using a variety of helpful positions and comfort measures
  • Constantly focus on the comfort of both the woman and her partner
  • Helping the environment to be one in which the woman feels secure and confident
  • Providing her with information on birth options

A labour doula works cooperatively with the entire health care team. In the event of a complication, a labour doula can be a great help in understanding what is happening and what options the family may have. The labour doula may also assist a new mother with initial breastfeeding and in preserving the privacy of the new family during the first hours after birth.

Postpartum Doula Training

In addition to their professional training and experience, whether it is from a nursing, midwifery, community care or other vocational background, individuals who wish to work as a doula must also complete a certified Doula training course.

The course offered through Douglas College has been approved by Doulas of North America (DONA International) and is taught by a DONA approved trainer. For the list of pre-requisites necessary to attend this course visit the DONA International website at: www.DONA.org or www.douglas.bc.ca for more information.

A labour doula can also help the expectant mother determine pre-labour from true labour and early labour from active labour. At a point determined by the woman in labour, the labour doula will come to her and assist by:

  • Helping her to rest and relax
  • Providing support for the woman's partner
  • Encouraging nutrition and fluids in early labour
  • Assisting her in using a variety of helpful positions and comfort measures
  • Constantly focus on the comfort of both the woman and her partner
  • Helping the environment to be one in which the woman feels secure and confident
  • Providing her with information on birth options

A labour doula works cooperatively with the entire health care team. In the event of a complication, a labour doula can be a great help in understanding what is happening and what options the family may have. The labour doula may also assist a new mother with initial breastfeeding and in preserving the privacy of the new family during the first hours after birth.

A labour doula works cooperatively with the entire health care team. In the event of a complication, a labour doula can be a great help in understanding what is happening and what options the family may have. The labour doula may also assist a new mother with initial breastfeeding and in preserving the privacy of the new family during the first hours after birth.

Douglas College is located at 700 Royal Avenue, New Westminster, British Columbia. Call 604-527-5472 for further information and upcoming course dates.

Opportunities With Drake Medox – New Additions Doula Program

IDrake Medox’s New Additions Doula Program has been the primary supplier of doula services for clients funded through the BC Ministry for Children and Family Development (MCFD), Family Services of Greater Vancouver, Regional Health Authorities and other community service organizations for over 10 years. We also serve clients who pay privately.

If you have the qualifications and are interested in contracting your services as a professional doula for clients of the New Additions Doula Program…we would like to hear from you. Doula services are generally provided to our clients in 4 hour increments and are normally spread over a 40 hour service schedule that lasts from 4 to 6 weeks. Each doula decides how many clients she wishes to accept at a given time.

To work with clients of New Additions, you must have the following basic qualifications:

  • Certified “Doula” training course
  • Nursing, community care, or midwifery experience
  • Current first aid adult/infant CPR certification
  • Food safe certification
  • Proof of negative TB test
  • Fluent in English - both oral and written
Additional Requirements:
  • Strong organizational and decision making ability/self motivation
  • Good communication and listening skills
  • Empathetic and compassionate personality
  • Ability to work independently
  • Attendance at professional development workshops (minimum 2 per year)
  • Medical examination, references and criminal record check

A labour doula works cooperatively with the entire health care team. In the event of a complication, a labour doula can be a great help in understanding what is happening and what options the family may have. The labour doula may also assist a new mother with initial breastfeeding and in preserving the privacy of the new family during the first hours after birth.

A labour doula works cooperatively with the entire health care team. In the event of a complication, a labour doula can be a great help in understanding what is happening and what options the family may have. The labour doula may also assist a new mother with initial breastfeeding and in preserving the privacy of the new family during the first hours after birth.

Douglas College is located at 700 Royal Avenue, New Westminster, British Columbia. Call 604-527-5472 for further information and upcoming course dates.

The first step towards becoming a member of our service program is to complete an on-line contractor profile (click here to complete) – and email your resume to info@drakemedox.com

Attention: Kalani Watkins, Program Coordinator – New Additions Doula Services

Contact Form