‘The Dutch way’
Having a baby in the Netherlands can be a complete different experience for you than what you are custom to in your homeland. We have a system that is based on risk-selection during the course of the pregnancy and the birth.
In general, most of the pregnant women start their pregnancy with a midwife in a midwife’s practice, somewhere in the area where they live. In Rotterdam are over 30 midwife’s practices who closely work together with the hospitals and gynaecologists. If you are a healthy pregnant woman your midwife will check you and the baby during the pregnancy and will be with you at the moment you give birth, either at home, in a hospital or birthingcentre. The week after you give birth ( the ‘Kraamweek’) your midwife will visit you at home to see how you and the baby are doing and to perform medical checks. It is also customary that a nurse (the ‘Kraamzorg’) will help you out at home with your baby the first week when your baby is born. They for example weigh the baby, help you with breastfeeding, teach you how to bathe and take care of the baby and consult the midwife if there are any medical concerns.
The midwife will advise you during the pregnancy about all the options you have in the Netherlands, from prenatal testing to the place you chose to have your baby.
If there are any abnormalities with you or the baby the midwife will consult a gynaecologist at the nearest hospital, and if necessary book you an appointment with the gynaecologist in the hospital. Medical care in a hospital is not freely accessible in the Netherlands, you need a referral from either your General Practitioner (‘Huisarts’) of from your midwife to ensure the costs are covered by insurance.
Your midwife will inform you about the regular prenatal care, such as blood testing, prenatal tests and ultrasounds as well if there is a reason to do extra medical checks in your specific situation based on your health before and during the pregnancy.
Some of the standard medical care we provide includes:
blood test around 12 weeks pregnancy to check your blood type, iron, glucose and most important infectious diseases such as HIV/hepatitis B.
the option to perform prenatal testing to search for downsyndrome’s (We will inform you very eloborate about this specific type of testing in a seperate consultation due to the complicated nature of this type of testing) You can read more about prenatal testing here.
optional ultrasound at 8 weeks gestation to determine if there is a intra-uterine pregnancy and a beating hart
Ultrasound at 12 weeks gestation to determine the exact due date based on the length of the fetus
The option to perform a very detailed ultrasound around 20 weeks to check the baby for big physical abnormalities such as spina bifida, a cleft lip/palate or abnormalities with the intestines. We will give you more information about whether you choose to perform this specific type of ultrasound in a seperate consultation at our practice. you can read more here.
Extra ultrasounds if medically necessary (on indication determined by your midwife)