The Doula Association of Alberta (DAA) is pleased to announce the reinstatement of a two Designated Support People (2DSP) policy in all Maternity and Postpartum Acute Care centres across Alberta, effective Monday, July 5, 2021.
As approved by the Alberta Health Services Emergency Command Centre, the 2DSP policy allows for a total of two designated caregivers to join a birthing person in both Labor & Delivery and Postpartum units. This policy provides for optimal support of a birthing person and their family. The standard 2DSP policy had been rescinded to varying degrees at acute care sites across the province as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic; some sites have restricted a second designated support person since March 2020.
While this policy does not provide a specific exception for professional doulas, it does allow patients the right to appoint an additional caregiver of their choice – this could be a doula or a family member/friend.
Prior to the policy revision taking effect, DAA Member doulas will receive a communication flowchart to be followed in sites that reject a second support person.
Given provincial vaccination status and declining daily case rates, the DAA is optimistic that the 2DSP policy can remain in effect moving forward. However, the DAA is committed to continuing policy conversations around doula support, outside the context of the pandemic emergency response teams. As previously communicated, a committee including AHS representatives from each of the five zones, as well as birthworkers from across the province, will work to develop a clear and confirmed understanding of a doula’s role and purpose in acute care sites moving forward.
Any future updates to acute care site accessibility and public health guidance will be released by the DAA as necessary.
The Doula Association of Alberta is a registered not-for-profit under the Alberta Societies Act. The DAA facilitates collaboration among doulas, educators, and healthcare professionals to optimize the accessibility of respectful, evidence-informed, and supportive doula care in Alberta. The Association is administered by a volunteer Board of Directors.
For more information: Lindsey Bowns Public Relations Manager, Doula Association of Alberta Media Cell: 403.971.8499 | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.doulaassociationofalberta.com