Doula Education and Requirement Considerations
There are many people who are interested in going into the healthcare field because they want to work with babies and pregnant women. The opportunity to work within these special stages of life can be a very rewarding and unique experience. One way to start this position immediately is to examine getting your certification as a doula. A doula is someone who works as an assistant or a coach for woman who are in childbirth or have just given birth. There are two different types of doulas; birth doula and postpartum doulas.
Birth doulas attend the birth of the child and work as the labor coach and helper during the delivery process. Postpartum doulas are focused on helping the mother after the baby has been born and they have both returned home. A doula does not replace the role of the midwife, obstetrician, or other healthcare professional in these scenarios. They are an assistant to help through the process of the labor and delivery experience, but they do not deliver the babies. The average income of a doula is around $51,000 and varies depending on the location, certification, and experience of the individual.
It's possible to be a doula without gaining any certification. However, for those want to do this as a career, it is ideal to receive a certification from one of the national doula certification organizations, such as DONA International. Getting certified as a doula is a quick process that can take less than a year. In a certification program, the individual learns a lot about labor and childbirth philosophies. There is the opportunity to attend seminars that will teach about labor, pregnancy, childbirth, post-natal care, and breastfeeding. The individual is required to attend births as an observer.
One of the benefits associated with this career is that it provides a quick degree which allows you to start working almost immediately. If you are interested in labor and birth and seeking a way to get into the healthcare field, then working as a doula would be an ideal choice for you. However, one of the cons of this option is that it is a very limited career choice. The individual may want to consider their work as a doula to be a stepping stone into another career pathway. Since the education and training requirements for doulas are minimal, more training would be necessary in order to work towards another career within the medical industry.
Ultimately, this can be a unique and fascinating job for someone who likes the idea of working together with babies and pregnant women within the medical industry. It is a good way to determine whether or not you will truly like the experience and if you feel that you will be ready to handle it. While the position does pay well in most locations, most people who work as doulas eventually focus on pursuing their education so that hey can gain access to other positions within the medical industry -- often positions that still allow them to work with babies and pregnant mothers.