Ask your Provider Questions
Being Informed & Involved Gets Better Results!
- I have some questions and concerns. I’d like you to answer them.
- I want to be informed and involved in any decisions that are made about me and my baby.
- I’m worried about the high risk of complications for Black Moms. What can we do to lower my risk?
- How can we work together to keep me and my baby safe and healthy?
When the Answers are Rushed or Unclear
- I don’t understand your answer/explanation. Can you say it more slowly? or Can you explain it simply?
- I know you are pressed for time, but my health is important to me.
- Please take a few minutes more to discuss this with me.
- If you don’t have time now, how will I get the answers I need to put my mind at ease?
- I don’t feel safe because I feel like you’re not listening to me.
- I want to speak to the person in charge of Patient Safety and Quality here.
- No decisions about me without me!
- If you experience disrespect or feel dismissed, and the provider is not apologetic or concerned when you call it to their attention, finding another provider may be the best the option.
Find Out More about Your Provider
- Do you support Normal or Physiologic Birth?
- I want to allow my body to labor and give birth under my own power to avoid c-section and other medical procedures. Do you support that plan?
- What percent of your deliveries are cesarean sections?
- Can I have more than one person support me during my birth?
- I have a Doula to help me with my birth. Do you welcome Doula support?
Learn about the Hospital or Birthing Center
- I would like to learn about the hospital where I will give birth – in terms of patient care, respect, and safety.
- How are they working to improve maternity care?
- How are they addressing racism and bias?
- How can I find out the hospital’s c-section rate and infection rate?
- I had a c-section – can I try for a vaginal delivery this time?
- Is the hospital Baby Friendly and Breast Feeding Friendly?
- Are there Birthing Rooms for laboring, birth and recovery?
- When can I take a tour of the Birthing Center or Hospital?
Bring a Trusted Advocate With You
- If possible select an advocate you trust – a friend or relative who will keep your health information confidential and not impose their opinions on your decisions.
- Choose someone who is a good communicator.
- Your advocate can help research health information, keep track of your progress, and support you in communicating with providers and staff.
- If you are not well or in pain, or if you feel stressed or intimidated, your advocate’s support in communicating can help prevent complications or errors in your care.