Kraamzorg: Postpartum Care for Women
Initiatives such as Kraamzorg in The Netherlands are examples to follow. This service provides postpartum care to all women who have just had a baby.
Postpartum is not an easy stage in a woman’s life. Although it is different for everyone, it tends to be a difficult, confusing and exhausting time.
We must take into account that during the postpartum period, women are recovering from birth or cesarean section while also caring for a newborn at the same time. This requires a huge amount of energy, something that is often lacking.
What is Kraamzorg
This is a service offered to women and babies during the ten days following birth. Through this service, mothers and their little ones receive home visits from a nurse or healthcare professional. In this way, the service is able to help mothers care for their babies.
The person who carries out this work is called a kraamverzorgster. It is their responsibility to ensure that the mother recovers quickly, as well as check up on the correct development of the newborn.
How to enjoy Kraamzorg
In week 34 of the pregnancy, the mother has to fill in the paperwork in order to access Kraamzorg. To do this, she goes to the agency in charge of providing this service.
This is included in most health insurance plans in The Netherlands. Based on the mother’s needs, she is then provided with the appropriate assistance.
Once the baby is home, the schedule for Kraamzorg depends on various factors. Basic, flexible, minimum care is provided.
One of the duties of the person carrying out this visit is to make sure that the area where the mother and baby will be is completely clean. They also ensure that it is safe.
In addition to this, of course, they provide support if any problems arise, for instance with the child’s feeding.
Making the decision to have a baby is life-changing: it means deciding that from that moment forward, your heart will begin to walk outside your body as well.
It is clear that post-natal care is necessary. However, in reality, this is often not applied, or at least, not adequately. The arrival of the baby completely changes our routines and regular self-care.
How to help mothers during the postpartum period
Thanks to services such as this one, mothers can resolve or address any problems at an early stage and in a much simpler way, and, of course, with the advice of an expert.
This service offers new mothers the chance to resolve questions and concerns during the postpartum period, as well as provide information and help make decisions in a responsible and conscious way.
We must take into account that at this moment we still don’t know much about the little one.
Additionally, thanks to the simple fact of having a professional close at hand, it is possible to emphasize the emotional state of the mother after birth.
This makes it easier to detect possible postpartum depression early on. It is an optimal way to avoid the difficult and unfortunate circumstances that can result from this type of condition.
More benefits of Kraamzorg
It may also facilitate the transition to a new stage of life: motherhood. This becomes something much more simple.
Exhaustion, which is normal in the first few weeks, is greatly reduced. Simply put, adaptation to life with a newborn is much less complicated.
With out a doubt, this is an extremely useful service. And although many mothers opt for privacy and time alone during the first few weeks with their babies, this is an option that everybody should have.
Then, at least, mothers would be able to choose whether or not the service is necessary for them or whether they want to receive it.
In the United Kingdom, a very similar service has been rolled out since 2013, although not under the name Kraamzorg. The implementation of programs like this in advanced societies suggests that in a few more years, this could be replicated in many other countries.
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- Lamkaddem, M., & Wiegers, T. (2004). Monitoring kraamzorg. Inventarisatie van de opleidingsmogelijkheden en-afspraken bij kraamzorgaanbieders in Nederland, 118-124. https://www.nivel.nl/sites/default/files/bestanden/monitoring-kraamzorg.pdf
- Korfker, D. G., Herschderfer, K. C., Boer, J. D., & Buitendijk, S. E. (2002). Kraamzorg in Nederland: een landelijk onderzoek. Eindrapportage “Kraamzorg voor Allochtonen. https://amanonline.nl/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/TNO-Rapport-Kraamzorg-in-Nederland-een-landelijk-onderzoek.pdf