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Expat Advice: Having a Baby in Belize City

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What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?

Belize City

How recently did you give birth in the country that you are reporting on?

5 months ago

Describe your experience giving birth there. What type of facility did you go to? What (if any) type of pain management did you use? How long did you stay in the hospital? Was it a positive experience? Etc...

WOW It was a trip! Being a poor Expat - a non profit worker, no insurance and a small income to draw upon heading home was not an option. I started out with a private Doctor after 2 miscarriages while in Belize. While I qualified for NHI ( national Health care) there are a lot of lines waiting and you do not get the consistency of having the same prenatal DR. at the birth of your child. I had to pay out of pocket for all of my lab tests and ultrasounds averaging approximately $100 US a month. My private Dr. was fantastic but as the pregnancy progressed I began to realize I was not going to be able to afford a private birth in a private hospital. Which could range from $2000 BZ to $5000 BZ. So I ended up having my final checkup at Karl Husner Medical Hospital. On the final visit I happened to get my personal Dr. Doing her NHI rotation and as it turned out I was suffering from preclampsia so I was rushed in for an emergency inducement. In a public hospital that best thing to remember is that you are your best advocate they do not tell you much they are used to people who do not have a ton of medical knowledge so the staff do not feel the need to communicate what is going on. I found I had to be really kind of pushy and ask what they were doing giving me and ask why and if the nurses did not know I had to ask for the head nurse etc. They also are Horrible Phlabotomists... I have never received so many sticks for one IV in my life and this is after I told them which arm to use which vein would work etc. (YEARS OF PLASMA DONATION DURING COLLEGE) Also Always check your IV lines they seemed to always leave air bubbles in the line. They also do not inform you as to what you need to provide for your self... you need to buy your own medication in advance if possible your own bed pads you need to bring your own water, cups, pillows blankets, and snacks. They are very strict ( unnecessarily so) about visiting hours. There also seems to be a big issue with attitude between the Nigerian nurses and the Cuban Doctors I have never been witness to so many arguments in my room about the patient next to me or about my self. The Creole and Belizian Dr. all seemed to handle things in a much calmer manner. The Nigerian Nurses were tough but caring they have a way to win you over and they seemed to respect that I spoke up for my self. After 30 hours of Labor and no real progression I was taken in for a C section ( my worst nightmare) I was terrified but in truth ready for the ordieal to be over. They wheeled me in I saw the face of My DR. and knew I was in her good hands. I was told I complined the whole surgery. But the sweetest moment was when I finally heard my daughter cry when i woke up later they brought my daughter to me and I kissed her and she nursed immediatly. I was broght back to my room. I was there for 3 more long days of staring at the wall, my Daughter was my companion. Grand total for 6 days in hospital, c section $250 US

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How did you choose your doctor, midwife or other type of medical professional?

My private Pediatrician suggested her.

If you were to have another child in this country, would you do anything differently in terms of preparation and/or the delivery?

I would go private all the way.

If a friend of yours living in the same country were expecting, what advice would you give her?

Save your money and have your child privately!

More Expat Advice about Having a Baby in Belize

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Comments about this Report

guest
Apr 18, 2013 00:29

One option is the birth clinic in Spanish Lookout. Loma Luz Hospital in San Ignacio has caring attendants and also has a female OB. Also, there are a couple of independent, private midwives in Belize who specialize in homebirth for healthy mothers. Check online for international midwives and also get word-of-mouth information from ex-pat women's groups like the Corozal Women's group and Cayo Connections.

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