Allow birthing partner at time of delivery during COVID-19

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I am a health care employee who is 38 weeks pregnant.  Therefore, I understand taking the necessary precautions to avoid the spread of covid-19.  However, it is inhumane that we are being stripped of our right to have a birthing partner during such a vulnerable, emotional experience.  My husband is a first responder, and is also aware of the precautions needed to be taken.  We have been self isolating for the past two weeks, just so that neither of us expose our baby, and family to the virus.  

Please sign to ask Governor Newsom to guarantee that hospitals will allow birthing people to have one support person present.  

Last week I was informed by my obstetrician that he would only be able to drop me off when I go into labor, and pick us up at the hospital entrance once the baby is born.  The best they could do is allow me to FaceTime during delivery.  I find that even more insane, on top of having to deal with the delivery I have to try and record it as well.  It just seems like asking for their support, and for my husband to witness his son being born shouldn’t even have to be something we should be fighting for.  It might be too late for us to see this through fruition since we are awaiting the birth of our son any day now, but I hope it helps any other women to benefit from it.

Fundamentally, risks for the people laboring alone will increase substantially. Not only can partners and spouses provide physical and emotional comfort during labor and postpartum, they are also essential in alerting staff when something has gone wrong and the laboring patient cannot notify nurses themselves, like in the event of an eclamptic seizure or a fainting episode.  Timing is critical in these cases and monitors can be unreliable.

We cannot expect nursing staff, already spread thin, to spend the limitless hours needed with each patient to ensure their health and their baby's health, to provide physical assistance and emotional support. 

We know the hospital system is overwhelmed in this crisis.  However, the burden will only be increased by banning support people from Labor & Delivery. We must ensure no one gives birth alone. We must ensure the maternal mortality rate does not increase during this time.