IBC Doula Services Promise

We promise to accompany you through labor to help you achieve a satisfying birth experience. IBC doulas promise to draw on our knowledge and experience to provide physical, emotional, and informational support to everyone present at the birth.

On Call Period

The on-call period for the contracted birth doula will being two weeks prior to your due date and end two weeks after your due date. If a birth happens prior to the on-call period IBC will still strive to provide doula services as stated. Please allow a two hour response time for voice mail. **Please arrange with your doula the best number with which to reach her.**

Prenatal Visit

There will be one prenatal meeting to review your birth plan, and give us a chance to discuss in detail your preferences regarding your birth. We can review or discuss anything covered in your childbirth classes. We will want to know your own personal ways of coping with pain, fatigue and difficult situations and what internal resources we can draw upon to assist you with the birthing experience. We will also want to know how you and your partner foresee working together, and the roles of others who may be attending the birth. We can discuss together what fears and concerns you might have regarding the birth. As your doula, our role is to help you have a satisfying birth as you define it. The more we explore this in advance, the better we will be able to fulfill this role.

Late Pregnancy

We are available for phone consultations and email questions in late pregnancy, and we encourage you to call with questions or updates. Once we enter the on-call period, we ask that you check in every few days to let us know how you are doing. 

When Labor Begins

When you think labor has begun, call your IBC doula. This allows us to begin making arrangements for attending your birth (childcare, time to eat, etc). We will then check in every few hours by phone, so we can provide information, ideas for comfort techniques, and reassurance. Together we will decide at what point in your labor you are ready for us to attend you. Once you make that decision we should be there within two hours, and remain with you until after the birth.

When You Are In Labor

We will offer help and advice with comfort measures. This may include guiding your breathing, enhancing relaxation, encouraging movement, suggesting effective positions for labor, and massaging. We can assist with gathering information about the progress of labor to ensure you have the knowledge needed to make informed decisions about your birth. We can also serve as an advocate for your needs with the medical staff. Our most critical role is providing continuous emotional reassurance and comfort.

After Birth

We will remain with you for 1-2 hours after birth, until you are comfortable, and the family is ready for quiet time together. We will also help with initial breastfeeding as needed. We are available by phone to answer questions about the birth of your baby and will schedule a postpartum visit, typically within two weeks of the birth. During this visit, we can provide breastfeeding support, baby care tips, referrals to community resources, and a chance to discuss the birth experience.

What IBC Doulas Do Not Do

We do not perform clinical tasks, such as blood pressure, fetal heart checks, vaginal exams, etc. We provide only physical and emotional support and advocacy. We do not make decisions for you. We will help you get the information you need to make your own informed decisions. We will also remind you if there is a departure from your birth plan, and will verify if this is, in fact, your informed decision. 

We will not speak to medical staff regarding matters when health care decisions are being made. We can discuss your concerns with you and suggest options. We can support you in discussions with staff as your advocate, making sure you have the opportunity to discuss concerns, but you or your partner will speak on your behalf to the medical staff. 

Disclaimer

IBC and IBC doulas will not claim any medical responsibility for injuries or incidental and punitive damages suffered by the client. The clients recognize that the doula is not responsible for any medical interventions used by other caregivers nor is in any way responsible for the outcome of the labor or the health of the mother or baby.

Failure of a Doula to Provide Service

We will make every effort to provide the services described here. Sometimes this is impossible for unforeseen reasons (illness, family emergency, etc.). To ensure that you will have a doula when you call we will arrange for a ‘back-up’ doula during your on-call period. This doula would only be used in case of illness or personal emergency.

Fees *
The total fee for these services is $995*. A deposit of $500 is required upon signing of the agreement. The remainder of $495 is due no later than 34 weeks of pregnancy or by the birth, which ever comes first. Payment should be made to: Informed Birth Choices, LLC, Informed Birth Choices 5 Payson Ave., Catonsville MD 21228. **For Washington D.C. region birthing locations (including Shady Grove and Holy Cross) there is an additional $100 travel fee; this fee is due with the deposit.** Payment plans are available.
Refunds & Special Circumstances *
If clients fail to notify the doula regarding the onset of labor, labor is precipitous, a cesarean is recommended, clients change their mind about doula services for any reason during late pregnancy or labor or for any reason do not use the doula service after this contract has been signed, there will be no refund. Should the medical staff restrict the doula’s presence in any way (ex. excluding the doula from the operating room or recovery room) no amount will be refunded from the doula fee. If a client does not schedule pre and/or postnatal visits or elects to not have one or more visit, nothing from the full fee will be refunded for not making use of these services. Refunds are not provided in these circumstances due to the fact that once this contract is signed, the doula agrees to be on call and available whenever the client needs assistance during labor. By being on call the doula frequently cancels meetings, classes and other appointments to assist the laboring mother. Additionally, the doula accepts a limited number of clients per month and turns away prospective clients once that number is reached. The client is responsible for payment of the fee once the services are contracted, regardless of circumstances or outcome of labor.
By typing your name(s) below, you acknowledge that you have read, understand, and agree with the above terms. Your typed name(s) below shall have the same force and effect as your written signature.
Mother's Name *
Mother's Name
Partner's Name
Partner's Name
Doula's Name *
Doula's Name
Today's Date *
Today's Date