What does a Doula cost?
Why should I hire one?
What do doulas charge?
Doula fees vary by geographic area, level of experience, and additional skills that may be offered (such as lactation consultation, photography, or massage therapy). Doula fees in the Denver metro area range from $700 (newly certified doulas) to over $1800 for doulas with extensive experience and service packages including additional skills.
Doulas in process of certification (having completed a training workshop and working on obtaining evaluations and completing certification process) often have flexible fees that are lower than certified and more experienced doulas. Find out more about working with a doula who is working towards their certification.
Why is a doula a good investment?
You may be asking yourself why it’s good investment to hire a doula. You might think, “My partner/sister/mother/BFF is going to be with me. Isn’t that the same thing?”
Actually, no, it’s not. While the loving support of your family and friends, and the skilled attentions of a labor nurse if you’re birthing in a hospital or birth center are incredibly important, none of those people are qualified to do what a labor doula can do for you. Studies have shown conclusively that the benefits of having a labor doula are not duplicated by either family/friends or nursing staff. (CAPPA has a great position paper outlining some of these results).
What research tells us about hiring a labor doula:
Research shows that doula support can shorten the length of labor up to 25%
Research shows that the use of narcotics in labor is reduced by 30% with doula support
Research shows that the use of forceps during delivery is reduced by 30% with doula support
Research shows that the use of synthetic oxytocin, such as pitocin, in labor is reduced by 40% with doula support
Research shows that doula support can lower the risk of cesarean birth by 26% to 80%, depending on the demographics of the study
Research shows that the use of an epidural in labor is reduced by 60% with doula support
In addition women attended by a labor doula are also:
- Less likely to have babies with APGARs of 5 or lower
- 27% less likely to be dissatisfied with their births
- Significantly more likely to have a spontaneous vaginal birth
- Significantly less likely to feel a loss of control in labor
Other long term benefits of working with a doula include:
- Improved breastfeeding
- Increased time spent with baby
- Decreased postpartum depression
Looking for more information about the benefits of doulas?
Read more and find links to several research studies in CAPPA’s Labor Doula Position Paper.
Work with Ana
I’ve been providing labor doula services and perinatal education in the Denver metro area since 1998, and am also a lactation consultant (IBCLC). I’ve worked extensively with families desiring natural (unmedicated) birth and families open to pain medication. I’ve also supported families through cesarean births, and experienced the special joy of walking alongside families planning to have a VBAC. I have extensive experience with hospital and home birth, as well as having attended births at Denver’s free-standing birth centers, such as Mountain Midwifery.
All these experiences have led me to create several service packages to meet a variety of needs, with packages from $650 through $1750. Contact me for more information about Doula Services.
I’m on a budget and can’t afford typical doula fees for my area. What do I do?
One option is to work with a doula in process of certification. These are doulas who have been through doula training and are working on completing the remainder of their requirements. Fees can be somewhat lower for doulas who are seeking to increase their experience or are still needing evaluations for births in order to certify. Click here for more information on certifying doulas.
Will my insurance cover the cost of my doula?
Certified doulas can provide an NPI number and are often payable through your HSA. While the number of insurance companies that reimburse for doula services are still small, they are growing. Reimbursement usually requires some persistence and submitting the claim several times. Discuss the documentation required with your doula in advance to make sure all requirements are met.