The Birth Doula: - Strives to provide continuous care for their client prenatally and during labour for as long as they are needed, as outlined in their agreement. - Provides emotional, physical, and informational support to clients prenatally and during the birth process. - Suggests and provides comfort measures. - Facilitates the full participation of their client's partner and/or other chosen birth support persons, if desired. - Respects the client's right to self determination by not speaking for them, nor making decisions for them. - Helps the client prenatally to determine their preferences for their labour and birth, and will assist the client in adjusting to any unexpected changes, should they arise. - Enhances communication between the client and the medical caregivers. - Works as a member of the larger birth team, including medical care providers. - Does not perform medical tasks such as taking blood pressure or temperature, checking fetal heart tones or vaginal exams. - Makes back-up arrangements with another doula to ensure the client will be cared for if the Doula is sick or unavailable. - Notifies the client in writing if they feel the need to discontinue service to an established client, and may help the client to find another DSA doula, if applicable. - Refers the client to appropriate resources if their needs are beyond the scope of the Doula's training.
The Postpartum Doula: - Works with families in the postpartum period, providing emotional, physical and informational support. - Respects the culture and parenting style of the family. - Provides evidence-based information so that the family can make informed decisions for the best interest of themselves and the baby. - Encourages the family to ask questions and express concerns, and provides encouragement. - Provides opportunities for rest, personal care, and healing. - Demonstrates newborn care and assists with infant feeding, as needed. - Assists with organization of the household. - Does not give medical advice or diagnoses, perform clinical procedures, or administer medications. - Refers client to healthcare professionals and other practitioners as needed.
Training and Experience: All DSA Birth and Postpartum Doulas have completed: - An approved training course with a minimum of 16 hours from an approved trainer. - A narrative statement on the value and purpose of labour and/or postpartum support. - Observation of a childbirth education series, or participation in other applicable continuing education related to their role as a Doula such as: breastfeeding, infant massage, miscarriage/loss support, etc. - A recent Criminal Record Check.
Doulas on the Experienced List have completed: - Support for three births, including written reflections and observations of each. (Birth Doulas) - A minimum of 12 hours supporting families postpartum, with written reflections and observations for each family. (Postpartum Doulas)