Birth Stories:

Letter to the hospital to keep doulas in the labour ward

4 Athlone Avenue



29th October 2012

To whom it may concern

RE: Ginny Oosthuizen

Three years ago my husband and I attended ante natal classes at Mediclinic Hospital, PMB.  It was at these classes that we met Ginny who subsequently attended the birth of our first child at the same hospital.  It was a very positive experience and we feel that this was definitely partly due to the presence of Ginny as our doula.  Ginny helped us both to have confidence in our roles.  I felt her support as a mother giving birth and my husband was glad to have Ginny informing him of ways he could help as my birth partner.  Since our little boy’s birth Ginny has become very close to our family, and at times seems like an extra grandmother.  Therefore when we heard we were expecting twins we did not hesitate to contact Ginny, in fact she was one of the first calls we made.  We wanted to share our news but also ensure that she was free and at home in July/August.  This was a very different birthing experience but we were again glad of Ginny being there for us all the way through.  Not just while in the labour ward but in the days at home before the birth, during my stay in hospital and after the birth at home again.  I really needed help with twins and Ginny was always just a phone call away.

Therefore my husband and I would be extremely sorry to hear that Mediclinic, PMB was no longer allowing doula’s to attend births.  In fact, during the lead up to the birth of the twins we visited Hillcrest Hospital and subsequently had an appointment with an obstetrician based there.  The ONLY reason we decided to again give birth at Mediclinic was that we could have the same Obstetrician and Ginny at the birth of the twins as for our first child.  Facilities wise Hillcrest has far more to offer than Mediclinic and if we had been refused Ginny to attend we would definitely have travelled to Hillcrest.  I feel very privileged to have been able to have two natural births, the second of twins, and feel that Ginny has played a large role in facilitating this.

Yours faithfully

Julie Swanepoel


0 #2 Virginia Oosthuizen 2012-10-30 18:12
Thank you Dr Lee we need more doctors in Pmb that think like you do!
0 #1 Claudine 2012-10-30 05:22
I second this wholeheartedly. Having a doula around for either natural delivery or if the need should arise C/ s is something that I think is poorly understood, vastly underestimated and should not threaten staff who work in hospitals. The doula is your friend - the patients, the staff, the doctor's friend and infinite help. I implore both Mediclinic and St Anne's to ensure doula friendly policies as I firmly believe they only benefit from this.

What I Do

I am living my dream while working with mums and babies. I see mums when they are 34 weeks pregnant and then go to their homes once they go into labour. I stay for the full duration of the labour and after the birth I assist them with breast feeding. I do another visit after the birth to see that all is well and to help where I can.  Mums are always welcome to call me in the event that they have any questions, whether before or after the birth. I am passionate about my work as a doula and I care and love all the families with which I work. Once you have been present at a birth you feel part of the family and it’s wonderful to hear news of the new baby’s life as he or she grows.

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