5 things to consider when preparing for birth in Abu Dhabi, UAE
More than any other important life event childbirth has to be well prepared in advance, well before being pregnant. And I would outline as soon as you are ready to welcome a baby in your life. And if you are expecting at the moment, you are reading this article, congratulations! So here a quick 5 steps guide if you are planning to have a baby in Abu Dhabi within the United Arab Emirates.
Step 1_Create a birth wishes/plan in Abu Dhabi:
It is a road map of the upcoming childbirth you will experience. It is your vision board for birth, even more than that, it is how you visualize welcoming a baby in your life. Not only it will help you to get clear with what you really want for this life changing experience but also it will guide you into manifesting all the important matters around your futur baby birth such as the 4 following steps.
Step 2_Choice of Your OB-GYN and Maternity Hospital in Abu Dhabi:
The UAE is an international model of cultural diversity with over 200 nationalities living together in the country. Abu Dhabi is its capital. There are fantastic obstetricians-gynecologists (ob-gyn) in the United Arab Emirates and the maternal healthcare infrastructure in both private and government sector are among the most modern in the world. Some maternity hospital facilities in Abu Dhabi look like 5-star luxury hotel. When preparing beforehand you can even find a doctor or midwife speaking your native language. Although the UAE is tolerant and progressive, Islamic law govern the country. Home birth are not allowed and childbirth must happen in hospitals or clinics. Also, it is important to have in mind that in UAE there is no private practice, all doctors are attached to a hospital or clinic. Thus, how to find an OB-GYN and maternity hospital? They are all easily accessible online with details like doctors’ credentials, country, languages spoken, the hospital childbirth’s options (natural birth, caesarean section, water birth). For sure all medical staff speak English and Arabic and you will be always asked what’s is your preferred language. Once you will have made an informed choice about your doctor and your maternity hospital, to open a file and be fully registered for admission, you will need to provide the following documentation:
Parents’ original emirates ID
Parents’ original passports and valid visas.
Parents’ original marriage certificate attested by your embassy plus an Arabic translated copy attested by the ministry of foreign affairs of the UAE.
A medical insurance or a payment in advance.
Right after the birth of your baby in Abu Dhabi, your chosen hospital is where you will start with birth registration by asking for a birth certificate issuance. To do so you will need most of the documents mentioned above. Note that your baby birth certificate will then allow you to acquire your baby identification (baby Emirates ID, Passport and Resident Visa) papers.
My biggest advice for this step is to make sure to book a maternity ward tour for you to access their services and ask all the questions dear to your heart!
Step 3_ Maternity Hospital Cost & Maternity Insurance in Abu Dhabi:
Let’s be straight forward here, without a valid maternity health insurance giving birth in Abu Dhabi and overall, within the United Arab Emirates is costly with hospital bill which can go up to AED30,000. Therefore, having a health insurance covering maternity service is paramount. When deciding for insurance provider please do read carefully the fine prints as some insurers are affiliated to certain hospitals and not others. Double check also the medical insurance coverage because you might want to extend to all maternity services (pregnancy/prenatal care, labor care, childbirth care and postnatal care) as bill can rapidly increase with hidden costs.
My biggest advice here is to take a maternity health insurance before you get pregnant as soon as you have decided you want a baby.
Step 4_Prenatal, Childbirth & Postnatal Preparations in Abu Dhabi:
In the United Arab Emirates, the majority of offers that cater for expectant mothers are to be find in the private sector. The options and quality/price range are large. Pregnancy, birth and postpartum journey require a solid preparation. By fulfilling this requirement, you are giving yourself high chance to live a positive pregnancy, birth and postpartum experience. How to find in Abu Dhabi providers for prenatal, childbirth and postnatal classes to be ready to transition from womanhood to motherhood positively and with confidence?
From the moment you desire a child to maximum early pregnancy, give yourself time to thoroughly look for and access maternity services. Use the same energy, time and money you will put in finding your doctor or your hospital to search for your Doula, your childbirth educator, your lactation consultant, your prenatal/postnatal yoga instructor or any other mom wellbeing specialist. And for your hunt in Abu Dhabi, social media is the go-to resource to gather up-to-date information.
My biggest advice for this 4th step is to join as early as you can support groups related to maternity or motherhood online or in person within your local community. It’s your best chance not only to gathered precious information about the quality and the price of services but also to meet and built relationship with future and veteran mothers.
Step 5_Built your support system while pregnant in Abu Dhabi:
We all know that it takes a village to raise a child. More than anywhere in the world the UAE is the place where these words of wisdom should be strictly taking into account when planning your childbirth and the overall motherhood/parenthood journey which start the moment your baby is born. The country is home for 10 million persons and 90% of its population are expatriates. Therefore, those residents are far from their families and among them many future first time parents (and it was my case) can find themselves clueless and anxious when it comes to welcome a first baby.
This is where it is crucial to build your support system and this where doulas come in. Doulas are non-medical provider offering prenatal, birth and postnatal services dedicated to the mother. They are trained and certified professional caregiver extraordinarily knowledgeable about pregnancy, childbirth, baby feeding and postpartum. Hiring a Doula to be part of your support system and to help you look for the people and institutions that will form your support system is a must for every expectant woman. Your support team for prenatal, birth and postnatal period will consist of not only your husband but also of your Doula, ob-gyn, midwife, breastfeeding counsellor, yoga teacher, baby-sitter, physiotherapist, pediatrician, your oversea family members on visit…everyone who is willing to help you welcome your baby into this world and thrive as a new mother.
For the 5th and last step of this guide on preparing to have a baby in Abu Dhabi, my biggest advice is to choose wisely the people and institutions that will be part of your support system. To do so, always make sure they are aligned with your birth preferences and mothering or parenting choices.
Thank you for the time you took to read this blog’s article and kindly share it around.
Wishing you a smooth journey into your pregnancy, birth and postpartum planification,