Doulas not allowed in hospitals during labor because of COVID-19

Doulas can't enter hospitals with expecting mothers during delivery because they're considered 'visitors' versus 'essential' regarding the coronavirus pandemic.

Posted: May 12, 2020 12:55 PM
Updated: May 12, 2020 1:09 PM

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WFFT) - Pregnancy looks a little different and maybe more difficult during COVID-19. 

Katie Keyser's first child is due in two weeks, and there's one person she wants by her side, but that can't happen right now. 

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That person is her doula, Kirsten Lane. 

Keyser says, "She's not just a visitor, she's someone that's very knowledgeable. She's someone that will be by me the entire time."

Indiana's stay at home order doesn't consider doulas "essential personnel," so they're not allowed into hospitals during delivery as of now. 

Stephanie VanderHorst, a certified midwife in Auburn, says, "Doulas should be recognized as an essential part of the healthcare team. They are a direct support person to the laboring woman as well as her family."

But the Indiana State Health Department hasn't yet made that distinction. 

Shanna Bradley, a doula of Journey Birth & Wellness, says, "We provide four basic things. Physical, educational, emotional and advocacy support. And we do that consistently throughout the whole pregnancy." 

Being considered just a 'visitor' was hurtful to Bradley and Lane, advocates for the Doula Network of Fort Wayne. 

Kellie Bailey, also a doula and member of the network, says, "We're not just coming to hold a hand." 

Bailey says holding a hand is important too, but wants others to know a doula's purpose is more prominent than what meets the eye. 

Kirsten Lane started a petition to grant doulas allowance into hospitals again within the state of Indiana. 

For more information, click here.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

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Confirmed Cases: 52685

Reported Deaths: 2775
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion12192697
Lake5764251
Elkhart372061
Allen2988135
St. Joseph223570
Hamilton1779101
Cass16519
Hendricks1482100
Johnson1366118
Porter86738
Vanderburgh8586
Tippecanoe79510
Clark72844
Madison68564
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Howard61758
Bartholomew60945
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Boone49744
LaGrange49110
Delaware48452
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Floyd42544
Monroe37528
Dubois3447
Morgan34431
Grant33426
Henry30618
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Clinton2913
White28110
Warrick27929
Dearborn27723
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Lawrence25325
Harrison22022
Greene20032
Miami1972
Jennings18012
Putnam1758
DeKalb1714
Scott1669
Wayne1656
Perry16010
Daviess15117
Jasper1422
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Whitley1086
Newton10110
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Jefferson932
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Jay720
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Washington681
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Sullivan541
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Adams491
Brown461
Blackford412
Fountain382
Tipton361
Crawford350
Switzerland320
Parke280
Martin260
Ohio230
Vermillion200
Warren161
Pike150
Union150
Unassigned0193

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 67995

Reported Deaths: 3069
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Franklin12574449
Cuyahoga9509400
Hamilton7179208
Lucas3110306
Marion275739
Montgomery264737
Summit2420209
Pickaway223542
Mahoning1996239
Butler194247
Columbiana140560
Stark1252116
Lorain120870
Trumbull107178
Warren106827
Clark83210
Delaware78415
Fairfield75117
Lake64322
Tuscarawas62811
Licking61913
Medina61432
Belmont57224
Clermont5327
Miami52031
Wood51551
Portage50760
Ashtabula45244
Geauga43643
Richland3926
Allen39141
Greene3809
Wayne37856
Erie30822
Mercer30410
Holmes2645
Huron2643
Darke26126
Madison2309
Ottawa21924
Athens2011
Sandusky18015
Coshocton1554
Ross1543
Washington14920
Putnam14615
Crawford1405
Jefferson1322
Morrow1291
Hardin12512
Union1191
Auglaize1124
Muskingum1061
Preble961
Lawrence930
Clinton922
Hancock921
Monroe8917
Hocking848
Guernsey834
Scioto800
Ashland782
Shelby784
Williams772
Logan731
Carroll713
Fulton710
Wyandot665
Brown621
Champaign601
Knox591
Fayette580
Highland581
Defiance563
Perry501
Van Wert501
Seneca432
Henry380
Paulding350
Jackson320
Pike290
Adams282
Vinton232
Gallia211
Noble140
Harrison131
Meigs130
Morgan130
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