Doulas are trained, certified professionals who work alongside nurses, midwives and doctors before, during and after childbirth. At Swedish, your caring, compassionate doula is a steady, reassuring presence who provides information and personalized physical and emotional support. She helps make sure you have the best possible pregnancy, birth and early parenting experience.
Doula services at Swedish are tailored to meet your needs whether you are an expecting or are a new parent. To start the process of hiring a doula or to find out more information, please fill out our contact form, and someone from our office will be in touch with you shortly.
You can trust one of our experienced doulas to be with you before, during and after your child’s birth.
- Before birth – Your doula will offer tips on what to bring, clarify your birth preferences and guide you through a labor rehearsal.
- During labor – Your doula will come to your home to reassure you and help determine when to leave for the hospital, based on your medical provider’s recommendations.
- At the hospital – Your doula will be with you throughout your labor and birth. She will help with comfort techniques such as breathing, massage, relaxation, body positions, hot and cold packs and using the tub or shower.
- At home – When you and your baby are at home, your doula will visit to discuss any feeding challenges, sleep issues and overall adjustment. Until your baby is one month old, your doula is also available by phone and email to answer any questions you have.
At Swedish, our doulas understand the joys and challenges you face during the months after a new baby arrives. Our doulas tailor their services to your needs. This helps create a strong foundation for you, your baby and your entire family.
In-home visits are usually four hours during the daytime and eight hours overnight. Other services include:
- Assisting in your healing and recovery from labor and birth
- Offering advice on the daily care and bathing of your baby
- Caring for the baby/babies overnight so you can sleep
- Developing family sleep strategies
- Providing emotional support as you adjust
- Giving guidance on breastfeeding, chestfeeding, bottle feeding and/or pumping
- Doing laundry, dishwashing and light housekeeping
- Managing care plans recommended by medical practitioners
- Preparing nourishing meals
Just like our in-person postpartum doula visits, our one-hour virtual postpartum visits can help you become more comfortable and confident with your newborn as you transition from the hospital to home. You’ll get the same caring support you get from in-person visits. You can use virtual meeting apps like Zoom, What’sApp, FaceTime and Google Chat.
Bereavement doulas provide support for families expecting the loss of their baby because of miscarriage or stillbirth, or whose baby has a condition that results in an uncertain outcome after birth. We offer specially trained doulas who can be with you during this time.
Bereavement doula service is provided at no cost to you and your family. Gifts from other families to the Swedish Foundation provide funding. Services include:
- Discussing your preferences and wishes for delivery and immediately after the birth
- Being with you at the hospital during the birth of the baby
- Supporting you at the hospital after your baby is born
- Delivering a meal to share after you get home
- Meeting with you to process and check in, up to five times after the birth
- Connecting you with other helpful resources
- Providing phone and email support for up to a year
You can accept or decline any of these services at any time.
The Black Birth Empowerment Initiative, or BBEI (pronounced “bay”), provides doula care to empower Black/African American parents for delivery and after their baby arrives. We honor Black lives by uplifting the Black birth experience with culturally congruent doula care.
BBEI addresses disparities in the Black community including disproportionately higher prenatal complications, stillbirths, postpartum complications and increased mortality rates for both the mother and child.
Our doula program ensures that you receive a postpartum care package tailored specifically to Black/African-American parents from a doula who looks like you.
Complete this request form to find and hire a doula. Our payment system only accepts payment in full. For current fees or to set up a payment plan call Swedish Doula Services at 206-215-6106.
Before hiring a doula, check with your insurance provider to see if they cover doula services.
Swedish Doula Services utilizes a secure software called MindBody to collect payment and manage scheduling. Please click here to pay for Doula services.
Please note that the online payment system only processes payments in full. If you are interested in setting up a payment plan, please call the Swedish Doula Services office. With a payment plan, the last payment is due two weeks before your due date. Thank you for hiring a Swedish doula!
Patients self-pay for doula services and choose the doula(s) they will hire. Check with your insurance company to see if they cover doula services. The doula program also provides free care for low-income patients. Patients are welcome to hire a Swedish doula or hire a doula who is not contracted with Swedish.
We have a diverse team of doulas to reflect the diverse population of birthing families at Swedish. Our doulas speak a total of 16 languages. With doulas from several different races and ethnicities, they are often helpful in bridging racial, cultural or language differences that may be present.
A doula does not count as a visitor or extra support person. A patient may have three support people plus a doula. Doulas are allowed in the operating room for a cesarean (C-section) with regional anesthesia, in addition to one support person such as a spouse or partner. Doulas are also allowed to remain in the room in addition to a support person during placement of an epidural and during recovery after a C-section. These policies apply to both doulas contracted with Swedish and those who are not.
All Swedish doulas are independent contractors. They follow their certification organization’s scope of practice for supporting clients.
- The doula’s knowledge of birth complements the partner’s knowledge of the birthing person.
- Doulas help partners be the best support they can be.
- Doulas know their way around the hospital.
- Doulas speak the language of labor.
- Doulas can give partners a break.
- Doulas keep partners calm so they can experience childbirth to its fullest.
Providers Specializing in Doula Services
At Swedish, you'll have access to a vast network of dedicated and compassionate providers who offer personalized care by focusing on treatment, prevention and health education.
Doula Patient Testimonials
"Our Swedish doula was a perfect addition to our team and very much empowered my husband to be a great birthing partner and also enjoy the process by relieving a good deal of pressure off of him. We were so thankful to have her with us and highly recommend her to anyone! Worth every penny."
"This was a great experience for me from start to finish. I now highly recommend doulas to people who are expecting and feel extra fortunate to have had access to the Swedish Doula Program. Having doulas vetted and being able to touch base with the program coordinator as first steps to this process made it easy and not daunting, which is how I felt when initially looking at doulas on my own."
“My Swedish doula provided support that I didn't even know I needed. She took the pressure off feeling like my husband and I had to figure out labor alone. Our doula knew when to make suggestions or offer advice that we greatly benefited from. No part of the experience felt overwhelming because I always felt like I had options provided to me and was in capable hands.”
“Our Swedish doula was absolutely amazing. During my pregnancy, she was there to answer any questions I had and she checked on me frequently. I wanted to labor unmedicated for as long as possible and she definitely helped me get as far as I did. Even after having the epidural, her presence was pivotal in my labor progressing. I can't sing her praises high enough.”
“I was hesitant to hire a doula but my husband convinced me since our goal was a med-free birth. It was the best decision we made! The best part of having a Swedish doula present was that it empowered me and freed my husband to be present for the birth in his own way. This was invaluable! I have already recommended Swedish and the Swedish Doula service to others. I'm a convert!”
“Our Swedish doula was so professional and also very caring. She took much of the stress out of anticipating the birth. Having her coach us through coping mechanisms and having her patient and guiding hands during the delivery was a huge help to both me and my husband. It was nice knowing that the doulas had been vetted through Swedish and that they are matched with the needs of each couple.”
“Our doula was incredible. The doctor and nurses were primarily concerned about our baby and the labor process, however our doula was able to focus on what I needed and assist in making sure my needs were met as well as keep me motivated and confident throughout my labor. I always felt supported with my doula by my side and I was able to have the birth experience I wanted because of her.”
“I planned on delivering at Swedish Ballard and was considering hiring a doula. Once I was informed that Swedish had their own doula program I thought I would give them a try. I'm glad I did! My delivery at Swedish Ballard with my doula made my birth experience a great one! I could not have obtained my goal of natural childbirth without her. As a first time mother it was so nice to have the additional support during and after labor.”
How You Can Help
To help low-income patients benefit from a doula, Swedish has established a fund to provide doula support free of charge. The Swedish Doula Program dedicates all proceeds above administrative costs to this fund. Donate to provide doula care for a low-income family.
All contributions are tax-deductible and 100% of your donation goes to fund doula services for a family that would not be able to afford it on their own. Learn more about our program to provide doula support to low-income patients.