During our times in Janiuay we have been able to take part in delivering babies.  Through this experience we have noted a few differences with Filipino birthing VS Canadian birthing.

Traditionally in Canada a woman who is pregnant will consult a doctor and continue to see him/her during the course of her pregnancy for check-ups. The nurse does not really have much participation with this time.  When the mother is going to deliver, usually her water breaks, and she heads to he hospital. Upon her admission in the hospital the nurses will monitor her and the doctor will actually deliver the baby. After the birth the nurse cares for the mother and baby for the 1-3 days they are in the hospital.  After that time the mother and baby will schedule time to see the doctor for concerns or check-ups. The nurse then does not have a role with the mother and child.

In the Philippines the pregnant mother will see a midwife or nurse in a community clinic (like the RHU) for all prenatal care.  Today Sharaya and Leah were placed in the prenatal clinic to assist mothers with their check-ups.  Some of the interesting things we noted were:  the mother brings her health record with her as they do not store them at the clinic, the time with the midwife seems rushed as they just perform the assessments and document,  there really is no relationship built with the mother, and not many questions are asked in regards to concerns or questions. When it is time to deliver the mother comes back to the clinic to give birth.  If the midwife has assessed that the pregnancy is complicated or there are concerns for birth then the mother needs to go to the hospital to deliver. There are no doctors present when the mother delivers.  There is the midwife and nurse.  The midwife delivers the baby and does the after care.  The mother will stay at the clinic for a few hours and then go home.  After care is also done at the clinic and all baby concerns are brought back to the nurse or midwife there.  It is completely different from Canada.  However, if you deliver in the hospital (which we have not yet observed, but will) the doctor is the main caregiver for the patient.

So far Sharaya,  Lerissa, and Elaine have been able to deliver babies! Brooke and Leah are eagerly awaiting a delivery so they can also have this amazing experience.

This is the baby Sharaya delivered.  Elaine assisted and Lerissa provided baby care.  It was the first birth we helped with as a group. It’s a boy!

Lerissa providing baby care!

These were all the people who were in the delivery room for this particular birth.  One is a clinic midwife, a clinic nurse, some are students from St. Paul’s, and us!

Brooke and Liana doing baby care

Brooke, Liana and Elaine with the baby Elaine delivered! 

Some differences we noted with the birthing process are as follows:

– Nipple stimulation for oxytocin release, rubbing of the uterus so it contracts, no pain medication for the mother,  baby immediately placed on mom’s tummy and encouraged to breastfeed, baby placed head down, feet up and on side in bassinet for fluid drainage, and the mother being able to go home within a few hours after birth.

(All pictures taken with permission from the patient)