What is a Doula?
The word "doula" comes from a Greek word meaning “woman helper.” Today, a doula is a birth companion, trained to give physical, emotional, and informational support to women and families during labor and birth. Research shows that when doulas attend birth, labors are shorter with fewer complications, and mothers are more satisfied with their experience.
All of our doulas are professionally trained either directly through our program or with organizations such as DONA International - Doulas of North America International, toLabor (formerly ALACE), and CAPPA - Childbirth and Postpartum Professional Association. Whether a pregnant person arrives at the hospital alone or with family and friends, the doula can help them to have a more comfortable and positive birthing experience. We are pleased to be able to offer this important service free of charge.
Why have a doula?
In 2017, a published Cochrane Review including more than 15,000 mothers reported that doula-supported women were
- to use synthetic oxytocin to speed up labor, have a cesarean, or require forceps delivery
- to rate their childbirth experience negatively
- to use any pain medication
- to give birth to babies with low five-minute Apgar scores (a way of measuring infant vitality)
And more likely ...
- to have shorter labors
- to be satisfied with their birth experience