Birth doulas and the hospitals in Singapore
Updated: Apr 26
If you are reading this article, you are probably interested in hiring a doula for your birth. There are some things you should take into consideration, before employing a doula in Singapore.
Hospitals that allow doulas (September 2019)
Here is a list of hospitals that allow doulas in Singapore. Mind that this article is written in September 2019, and it is to every hospital’s discretion to change their protocol at any time. Always make sure you have the most recent information.
-KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital
-National University Hospital (currently only allows doulas who were already registered before 2018 and who complied with very strict rules. Doulas who started practicing after 2018 are currently not allowed to register)
-Thomson Medical Center
-Mount Elizabeth Hospital Orchard
-Mount Elizabeth Hospital Novena
Hospitals for waterbirth
-National University Hospital (obligated to also employ a midwife from EMMAcare)
-Thomson Medical Center
-Gleneagles Hospital allows hydrotherapy (laboring in water and coming out for birth) if you provide the tub and have two doulas present (one for the mother, one for the tub)
Doulas Of Singapore
The DOS is the only recognized doula organization in Singapore that lobbies for hospital access for doulas. There is an extensive list of doulas and trainees on their website. Doulas practicing at NUH also have to be a member of DOS. If you are interested in birthing at NUH with a doula present, look at their members page to find a doula registered there.
How to choose the right hospital for your birth in Singapore
With all this choice, how do you know which hospital fits your needs best? I always answer this question by saying that your choice of hospital should reflect the type of birth you are looking for. Not so sure about the hospital you chose? No worries, you can always change until the last minute.
So how to choose?
If you are craving Italian food, don’t go to a Mexican restaurant and be disappointed with the lack of pasta dishes on the menu! It’s the same for your birth: do you want a natural birth? C-section? Waterbirth? A doula present? Think about what is important to you in your birth first.
After that, inform yourself by asking for other people’s experiences in your shortlisted hospitals. Many of us live here as an expat and are far away from friends and family, but there is a huge support network readily available. There are many forums or Facebook groups focused on pregnancy and parenthood in Singapore. Ask questions on other women’s experiences. Next, you can contact a doula (check my website here for my doula services or visit www.doulasofsingapore.com) for an extensive list of doulas registered with DOS) for a free chat on your hospital of choice. Many of us have plenty of experience with working in certain hospitals, and we’ll be able to share that knowledge with you.
Next, you want to make sure that your hospital and your doctor are compatible: many doctors in Singapore practice independently, and are not tied to a certain hospital. Some of them are though; so, it is important to check early on if your choice of doctor, choice of hospital and which kind of birth you’d like are all compatible!
Never feel pressured to have a birth you don’t feel comfortable with, just because your doctor said so. It is never too late to switch doctors (I had a friend switch doctors in the middle of labor, hours before her baby was born). In twenty years, you won’t remember the name of your doctor; but you will remember your birth experience.
Contact me if you have more questions regarding giving birth in Singapore,and achieving a better birth experience!