terms of service
What is a Birth doula?
Doula accompanies women in labour to help ensure a safe and satisfying birth experience. Doulas draw on their knowledge and experience to provide emotional support, physical comfort and communication with the staff (as needed) to make sure that you have the information you need to make informed decisions as they arise in labour. Doula can provide reassurance and perspective to you and your partner, make suggestions for labour progress, and help with relaxation, massage, positioning and other techniques for comfort.
Doula meets with an expectant couple once on an interview basis. This meeting is free of charge and requires no additional commitment. This meeting allows each party to become acquainted and share philosophies to determine if there is a suitable match. Birth is a profoundly personal experience and you must feel comfortable with your choice of doula.
Doula meets with the client before a birth to go over basic childbirth education and birth plan (at least one face to visit is highly recommended). These sessions will be conducted at your house, or at a place of your choosing, or virtually. You and your doula will certainly remain in touch by telephone as your due date approaches.
When you are in labour
It is preferred that you call the doula when you think you are in labour even if you do not yet need her. She can answer questions and make suggestions over the phone. You will decide if she should come right then or wait for further progress/changes. One hour is usually needed from the time you ask doula to come (depending on place of birth). We will also decide where to meet (home, hospital, birth centre). Except for extraordinary circumstances, your doula (or her back-up) will remain with you throughout your labour and birth.
Your doula usually remains with you for approximately 1-2 hours postpartum, until you are comfortable and your family is ready for quiet time together. She can also assist with initial breastfeeding if necessary/requested.
She is available for phone contact to answer questions about birth or your baby and would like to get together with you within one to two weeks to see how you are doing, review the birth, and get feedback from you about her role. If your package includes more postpartum support, she will coordinate based on your needs and her availability.
What Birth doulas do not do
- Perform clinical tasks such as blood pressure, fetal heart checks, vaginal exams, etc.
- Make decisions for you. (We will help you get the information necessary to make an informed decision. We will also remind you if there is a departure from your Birth Plan.)
- Speak to staff instead of you regarding matters where decisions are being made. (We will discuss your concerns with you and suggest options, but you or your partner will speak on your behalf to the clinical staff.)
Failure of a doula to provide service
We will make every effort to provide the services described here. Sometimes this is impossible (for example, a rapid labour). If our failure to attend your birth is due to our error, there will be no charge for our birth services and we will, remaining is used for prenatal visits, 24/7 phone service and one postpartum visit. If it is due to your failure to call us, no refund is issued. Birth can be a very unpredictable event, and although we will provide physical and emotional comfort to be best of our ability, we cannot guarantee you a problem-free birth.
We agree to work for you on a pre-determined schedule, subject to availability and mutually agreeable hours. For billing purposes, an hour is considered to begin when the doula arrives at your home on a previously arranged time.
No refunds are given on the retainer fee. The retainer reflects our commitment to be available to you as well as your commitment of payment for securing our services. The retainer is equal to two weeks of service.
If your doula is unable to attend your birth because of unforeseen circumstances, you may make use of your back up doula. No refunds are provided in the event that a backup doula is used. No refunds are provided if you choose not to have a backup doula attend your birth.
All Birth Doula fees are not subjected to taxes. Clients may submit their payment online in full or provide a credit card for us to have on file to process fees as per a payment plan. Clients will submit deposit of 2 weeks of service as a non-refundable deposit (retainer fee included in total price). This deposit is required to reserve doula care. Clients booking less than 2 weeks of services will pay proportional price.
Birth doula care will NOT be confirmed until payment is received.
Cancellation and Refunds
If a client wants to cancel their birth doula care:
- The client will be eligible for a 75% refund if given 60 days notice from their due date or more.
- The client will be eligible for a 50% refund if given 30 days notice from their due date.
- The client will be eligible for a 25% refund if given 14 days notice from their due date.
- Proof of their due date may be requested at the time of the refund.
No refund or modification of services are provided in the following circumstances:
- cancellations within less than 14 days of the due date
- in the event of a planned or unplanned cesarean delivery
- in the event that you do not call your doula or do not give her enough notice for her to make your delivery
- in the event that backup is needed
Pregnancy and birth on rare occasions include unfortunate outcomes such as stillbirth or miscarriage. Doulas are trained at helping parents through these situations and we would encourage you to call your doula to help you through any unexpected outcome. A doula can provide reassurance and resources to assist you through these difficult times. If you have booked a doula before 14 weeks of pregnancy and you have a miscarriage, we will provide a full refund if no prenatal visits have taken place. After 14 weeks we strongly encourage your continued use of services as booked.
For Group and Private Sessions
If a client wants to cancel a group session registration:
- The client will be eligible for a 100% refund if given 14 days notice from the agreed upon session date.
- The client will be eligible for a 50% refund if given 7 days notice from the agreed upon session date.
Personal information is collected for use by Lenka Pinkavova for contact purposes including the newsletters, which we use to regularly be in touch with our clients about important information regarding their care, upcoming events and recent studies regarding topics on pregnancy and parenting. Personal information may be shared with doulas in our practice who are, or become involved in the clients’ care.
Your contact information will NOT be sold or shared with any group outside or added to any email subscription list outside of Lenka Pinkavova´s email list.