…for you have joined the civilized world.
And this time, they really mean it.
Read more here.
Such a headline could be read any given month over the last 5 years in Wroclaw (and elsewhere). The only problem with such an announcement is that until now access to anesthesia for birthing moms was purely hypothetical. The reason? Well, as the Polish saying goes - if you don’t know what it’s about, it’s about the money.
I am not suggesting that moms had to pay for anesthesia. That would have been too easy. Anesthesia, other than a shot of Dolargan* or in my case Vitamin B, was not available because there was no one to administer it…unless you needed (or “needed”) a c-section. Then you were good to go.
Hospitals are refunded a set amount of money for each procedure performed. That includes vaginal births and c-sections, respectively, no matter what resources are actually used in said birth. This amount, on average, is enough to cover the staff, equipment, drugs, etc. needed for each birth or c-section. Hospitals are strongly motivated then to use as few resources as possible with each birth. This system, in fact, would work just fine if not for the lack of anesthesiologists. Even if the hospital allowed patients to pay for the anesthesia, it is not possible to pay for the anesthesiologist.
So, it sounds like I am complaining. Boo-hoo, poor American mom gives birth in this 3rd world country. It was soooo painful and and they didn’t help me at all.
Not true. Ok, it was painful, but they did try to help me…somewhat. Didn’t I mention the Vitamin B shot?
I have given birth in Poland. Twice. Without anesthesia of any kind. I simply didn’t need it which was convenient because they weren’t offering it. Birth is painful. It is true. It is very painful even, but what was more distressing for me than the pain was my complete and total lack of options. You have to give birth i już. Koniec. Kropka.
And so I did. Misiu says that I did an excellent job as well. Don’t you know that I am Super Mom? I even have a t-shirt that says so.
Now if only Wroclaw could do something with its roads.