Nothing of its kind has been available up until now and pregnant women have had to guess and hope that their OB or midwife would meet their expectations. According to the recent press release from the CIMS (PDF),
“The Birth Survey is the first ever consumer ratings website dedicated solely to providing feedback on obstetricians, midwives, hospitals, birth centers and homebirth services.
The consumer reviews include overall ratings and recommendations for birth facilities and care providers, and also a seven item set of questions on providers’ interpersonal and communication skills, facility intervention rates, and information on finding good care. A national average of ratings is also displayed to provide comparison with individual ratings.”
This is such a fantastic project in so many ways. Women have more information with which to make an informed decision when choosing birth providers rather than throwing a dart at their HMO book.
I could have really used this information when choosing the midwife for my first birth rather than choosing her based solely on the fact that she was a midwife. Unfortunately you can only complete the survey within three years of your birth so I was not able to tell the tale and warn others against my medwife. Since my second birth was unassisted I have nothing at all to contribute to the survey!
Even though I cannot participate directly, I strongly encourage anyone who has had given birth in the US in the last three years to complete the survey. This information is invaluable to future birthing mothers whether you had a phenomenal experience or a horrible one. Please share.
If you are currently pregnant then head on over to The Birth Survey to hopefully view consumer feedback on the provider you have chosen.