In the country without midwives

In the country without midwives


In front of the large glass window, the rooftops of Brooklyn are under a blanket of dense clouds. Lauren sits down on the gray couch of her apartment, and Stephanie Heintzeler presses the little Elliot in the Arm. He is 13 weeks old, wearing a light blue Romper and chuckles gleefully. “The individual nursing units are now shorter, is it?” asks Lauren. “Yes, exactly,” says Heintzeler, “15 minutes, sometimes even five.”

Lauren is 35, Elliot her first child and Heintzeler your Doula. So midwives are called in the USA. Heintzeler was at Elliot’s birth and check back regularly for Lauren or calls to answer questions and help where they can. In Germany, where Heintzeler is coming from, this is nothing out of the ordinary. But this is New York and in the US, midwives are not provided after the birth by the health system.

If there are no complications and mother and child are healthy, the parents sent the newborn shortly after birth from the hospital back home and left to fend for themselves. In the hospital, there are usually only a very short introduction in the matter of breast-feeding and Winding.

Only those who have money, can afford a midwife

Who wishes after the birth, a Doula or a lactation consultant, it must pay in the United States, in most cases, even like Lauren. “I think this investment makes sense,” she says. “If you read too much about birth and babies, by turning it completely. To have an expert on the side, you can ask, calmed down tremendously. That would be good for every mother in this country.”

Stephanie Heintzeler is well utilised. “I deal with approximately 50 parents per year,” says the 41-Year-old, who has no children of their own. “I’m up to six births in the month, around courses and home visits.” The days of the midwife are Packed full and often hectic. “I have two phones, one for all and birth phone. The for all the I’ll turn it off once, just after birth, when I sleep. With the birth of phone is always on.” If one of your customers, the contractions become stronger, the los grid Heintzeler.

The Job ruled her life. “I can’t go leaving the city, to the beach, to New Jersey, or Hiking, the. In a maximum of one and a half hours, I must be able to with my clients. I can’t drink, let’s go to the Club or an hour on the phone don’t look that. You get used to it, but it determines the life.”

From the small town to the metropolis

Heintzeler is born in the USA, but in the Hessian town of Bad Homburg grew up. In Germany she completed a training to become a midwife before she came in 2003 to New York. There is a gynecologist hired you as a receptionist, she later moved to a travel Agency and was a tour guide. At some point, someone told her that in the US there are officially no midwives, but the so-called Doulas, who do not relieve themselves, but women-before, during and after the birth accompany.

The professional title is not protected, anyone can call themselves in the USA Doula, but several organizations offer certifications. Heintzeler made courses, certified, and accompanied soon, the first woman to be at her birth. “We were at night in their apartment in the 15. Floor with a view over the Skyline and I helped her through the contractions. Everything was dark except the lights on the outside – as it has grabbed me and I thought: I’ll do That from now on.” In the meantime, has built up the German a real Doula Business, she oversees a 15-person Team, it gives orders.

The demand and the number of certified Doulas have increased in the past few years, reported recently in the New York Times. The benefits for both mother and Baby are scientifically proven for a long time. “If only every woman could have after the birth, a Doula”, – stated in the article.

But this is and remains in the United States is largely a luxury for the wealthy. Heintzeler requires 4000 dollars (about 3500 Euro) for their standard package: care during pregnancy by telephone and SMS, depending on a home visit, before and after the birth, as well as support during the birth itself. Only very few Americans get this cost of their health insurance or employer-reimbursed differently than most Germans and other Europeans, make up around half of Heintzelers customers.

Harsh climate in the delivery room

“For my European customers, I am also a cultural Translator. Many are downright horrified about how it’s going.” German women were in the delivery room are often degraded, to speak to you hardly with your name on it, but only with “mommy”. In addition, they would have less participation rights than in Germany.

“If interventions are needed, be it a venous drip, painkillers, or even a caesarean, is not even asked, but simply made.” The greater legal responsibility of the Doctors to come, if, for example, goes wrong. “Very careful,” says Heintzeler, “with a half a foot in prison.”

Also, the nursing staff on the maternity ward it is not easy. “This year, we’ve had 9500 births,” says a nurse of the New York’s Mount Sinai hospital, who wishes to remain anonymous. The 35-Year-old has two small children and works a minimum of 13 Times a month in the night shift, from 19 PM to 7.30 PM. “We have very poor and very patient. I am often treated, yelled at, or looking down.”

In private, the nurse would have had after the birth, like a Doula. “Especially with my first child, I had Breastfeeding problems with the. A Doula would have helped me for sure, with my Fears and my nervousness. But I couldn’t afford it.”