Posts: 3 | Joined: 4th Dec 06
I'm 6 weeks pregnant, a 1st time Mum and have been researching everything under the sun including this. Here's what I've found out:
1) The NHS is underfunded and understaffed, meaning NHS midwifes can't spend as much time with you or give you the personal attention you need.
2) There is no guantee of which midwife you will actually have at the birth with the NHS.
3) Some of the thinking with NHS midwifes is a bit dated or is forced to go along with certain NHS guidelines which may be in direct conflict with your personal choices or birth plan.
It is expensive (average £2700) according to independentmidwifes.org.uk) and I am also looking at hiring a Doula (£300) as a much cheaper option, although they don't have get involved on the clinical side as much.
Bottomline for me is that yes, its a lot of money, but we will probably end up going for it as I want a home water birth and there is a fabulous midwife in our area who is experienced in both and the NHS midwife is not experienced enough in either.
Hope that helps and would love to hear what you decide.