Finding an ObGyn while Pregnant

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Moving to the East Bay when 8 months pregnant

Nov 2010

Hi there. We are a couple who will be expecting our first baby in late April. There is a possibility we will be moving from S.F. to the East Bay sometime near the 8th month of my pregnancy and we're worried about switching doctors. We've established a fairly strong trust with our current OBGYN but we'll be looking for an OBGYN in the Oakland / Berkeley. What we are wondering is if it will be really hard to find a doctor so late in my pregnancy. So far there have been no problems with my pregnancy and everything has been pretty smooth. We are insured under a HMO plan which typically assigns a primary doctor who will then refer an OB. Is this an unrealistic transition? Has anyone changed doctors this late in their pregnancy and if so what was your experience like? And of course, any OB recommendations would be greatly appreciated.

Hello - I would suggest you look for / find a new OB now. The appointments are just once per month-ish early on, so it's not so many extra trips across the Bay now. I had to change from Kaiser to Blue Shield at 7 mo pregnant, and it was tough. I had to call a number of ob offices to find someone who would take me. Then I tried to meet as many of the doctors in the practice as possible (visits every week at the end made that easier).

As for recommending a doctor, it is all about what you are looking for. Do you want the UCSF residency top school analytical, knows all the studies & study results in her head type of doctor? or the more holistic comfort kind of midwife/doctor? also, there are many practices where you get who's on call, as opposed to your own doctor for the labor & delivery. There are pros and cons to that. We had a great experience at Alta Bates - the nurses during labor are almost more important for your during labor comfort & experience. been there

Hi! I did the same thing this year in May. We live in Berkeley, and I switched to an OBGYN in Oakland when I was 36w pregnant. The whole thing was an insurance issue, we had a new insurance and it caused us lots of trouble. Eventually I understood that as HMO, I had to get another OBGYN, if I did not want to pay 30%. So from my PCP I got a name of a doctor within network, closest one was in Oakland. The first time I called them they asked me to get all my files and fax them over, then they would decide if the doctor will accept me. I was so tired of all this insurance struggle, but I went to my old OBGYN office to get copies, did not fax them to the new doctor but called for an appointment - this time they surprisingly did not ask me for the reason of the appointment. When I got there, they saw of course that I was pregnant and they got a bit nervous. The doctor wanted to talk to me before accepting me as a patient. He took a look at my papers and since everything looked good, he said ok, because where else I would go this late, he said. Though he emphasized that I now had to follow exactly his prescriptions (well, I did. I did the 3h glucose test, but I refused an extra ultrasound at week 38 - felt that unnecessary). So don't worry too much, the change of OBGYN is possible. Take care of yourself and good luck! kel
You only got a few answers, so I thought I'd offer another perspective: maybe you don't need to change your OB at all? I live in Walnut Creek, but work in SF, had all my appointments in SF, and my son was born in SF. My husband wasn't really excited about that - he worried I'd be giving birth on the Bay Bridge, I think - but it was basically a non-issue. We went to the hospital in the middle of the night, and the only downside was that my husband couldn't hop home quickly for anything we forgot. Good luck, whatever you choose.