I just read this nice article summarizing the birth options in Costa Rica: Natural Childbirth Choices in Costa Rica.
Since we plan on hopefully having a homebirth in Costa Rica, this is great information. When we were originally researching the idea of moving to Costa Rica, I actually had a lot of trouble finding information about options for natural childbirth in the country. I suppose that’s because homebirth is a bit of an underground option there still. The article above gives a good summary of the issues going on in childbirth in the country, and how to deal with it as a consumer.
A friend of mine recently asked me whether I was afraid to give birth in Costa Rica. I told her no. But I think if you were someone not that educated about their cesarean rate, and what interventions go on in hospitals, you might be right to be fearful of birth in Costa Rica. I’m not afraid because, even though I am not pregnant yet, we have already set up the necessary contacts for us to have a homebirth in Costa Rica. I know that if I am forced to go to a hospital due to some life-threatening emergency, I will get good medical care in Costa Rica. But I won’t allow myself to be forced into an unnecessarily medicalized birth unless it is truly necessary. And in a country where some hospitals have greater than an 80% cesarean rate, I’ll be on my guard. But frankly, I’m on my guard in this country (USA), where I’ve been hearing of hospitals with a 50% cesarean rate and climbing. From what I hear, some of the New Jersey rates are the worst. So how different are we, really, than Costa Rica?
Plus – and this is really one of the keys in my mind – I know Arp has my back on this one. I know that no doctor with a scalpel in his hand is going to come close to getting past my husband without there being a very good reason. When you are in the throws of labor, there just isn’t another substitute for a partner who will do anything to protect your right to a normal, natural birth.