How to choose a prenatal care provider

your providerWhether you choose an obstetrician, a family practice doctor, a certified nurse-midwife, or a maternal-fetal medicine specialist, the first step in getting prenatal care is to find the best provider for you.

Choose a health care provider who makes you feel comfortable and who listens to you. Questions you may want to consider include:
• Does the provider have a good reputation?
• Does the provider listen to you and take the time to explain things clearly and thoroughly?
• Are you comfortable with the gender and age of the provider?
• Does the provider make your partner feel comfortable, too?
• Is the office staff pleasant and respectful?
• Is the location of the office convenient? Do the hours fit your schedule?
• What hospital is the provider affiliated with? Does the hospital have a good reputation? Is its location convenient?
• Is the provider in a solo, group or collaborative practice?
• Will you always be seen by the same provider during your office appointments?
• Who covers for the provider when he or she is unavailable?
• Who handles phone calls during office hours? Does the provider charge for phone consultations? How are calls and emergencies handled after hours?
• Does your insurance cover this health care provider?

It’s OK to ask for an informational interview with more than one provider before making your decision. This is an important time in your life and you want to feel as comfortable and well cared for as possible.