Doula FAQs – Liaising with your carer in Ireland
Doulas are not exactly the norm in Ireland, so you need to make sure that your hospital or home birth midwife know that you plan to bring a doula with you to the birth. Most maternity units have a general “one partner in labour” policy, and for most women this will be the father of the child, but not for all women. Some women may chose to have their sister, close friend or their mother as their birth partner. However, having said that many units are looking more favourably on doulas as more doulas go in with women and hospital staff realise that doulas can be a great source of support.
If you are planning to take a doula into the labour and birth with you your doula will be able to advise you on what your local hospital policy is. For the most part it is a good idea to have it recorded in your notes repeatedly during the antenatal period that you intend to bring in a doula in with you. Some units require you to write to the Director of Midwifery to request permission to bring in a doula, and some of the larger Dublin hospitals only allow doulas in special circumstances. The Coombe hospital in Dublin has an open doula policy and is more doula friendly in that sense than the other two Dublin maternity hospitals. Here is a link to their position paper on doulas ; http://www.coombe.ie/content/files/Doulas.pdf