nashville doula

Coronavirus and Your Pregnancy


Updated 5/02/2020

There have been some very reassuring changes in the past week. With any problem, knowledge can empower even with viruses such as COVID-19, the newest Coronavirus.

  • Doulas are now back as your second support person at Vanderbilt.
  • Some hospitals that continued with doula support have lifted some of the restrictions surrounding that support. Doulas are allowed to leave the birthing room during your labor.

Mothers-to-be have many things to be concerned about without coronavirus. With knowledge and planning, you can be empowered to have your best supported birth experience possible. This blog post plans to keep you up-to-date on local hospital and birth center policies. We also discuss thoughts on your Birth Plan A and planning for contingencies.

First some things epidemiologist know about this virus:

  • Pregnant women have faired very well
  • Newborns have faired very well

Franklin Institute of Wellness produced free webinars about COVID19.

Evidence Based Birth is providing information and regular updates about COVID 19 here:

Coronavirus and your birth plan

Because hospital visitor policies have changed and remain fluid, support of friends and family during your birth and postpartum may be affected. If you have a doula, she will continue to be a valuable part of your birthing team at most locations. Although your doula is an essential part of your birth team, some may include her as a visitor. Please check with your place of birth and your care provider if it is not clearly stated in the current policy section included below. If you have a birth photographer, you will want to check about their admittance, too.

Prudence suggests considering who could support your birth. Some things to consider:

  • Possible ongoing travel restrictions
  • Person best to emotionally and physically support you and your partner during labor
  • Person who would best support you, your partner, your baby and your breastfeeding postpartum
  • In case further restrictions become necessary, consider one person that would fill both birth and postpartum needs

Most hospitals are staffed by some traveling nurses. Nurses have historically become sick with these viruses more than the general population. For these reasons, the need for support in the hospital may become even more important than usual. Making a back-up plan changes the picture from what if to just in case.

Doula Support

Your doula’s support will be even more important during this time. A birth doula provides continuous support during labor. A postpartum doula can also support you on the postpartum ward. A sibling doula assures you that your children at home are well cared for. There is peace of mind knowing your doula will be there in case of travel restrictions or sickness.

We are now offering virtual support for birth and during your postpartum. To learn more about our services, please visit our services.

Greater Nashville Area

Hospitals are making changes in their policies regarding visitors and non-hospital employed support people. This may affect your doula support and your family support during your birth and postpartum hospital stay.

These are changing rather quickly and may at times be more provider specific. Please check with your provider for the latest policy.

Current Coronavirus policy for Nashville area Labor and Delivery locations:

No Nitrous Oxide is being used during this time at any hospitals.

St. Thomas Midtown Hospital (All St. Thomas Hospitals)

  • No visitors under age 18
  • There are two entrances. Screening for symptoms at entrance.
  • Limited Visiting Hours: 4:30a.m.-8p.m. M-F; 6a.m.-8p.m. Sat/Sun.
  • Be prepared to provide your support person with masks
  • One healthy support person overnight and through your postpartum stay. This per
  • Doula support is welcome

Vanderbilt Hospital

  • Patients may have 1 person and their doula
  • Your doula will need to be prepared to present her certification.
  • After birth and during postpartum stay, only 1 visitor is allowed.
  • Boarder babies can have 1 -2 parents or guardians.
  • Bella Baby newborn photograpy will not be availabe.
  • No visitors under age 16

Centennial Women’s and Children’s Hospital

  • No visitors 16 years and under
  • Patients limited to 1 support person (partner, family member, or friend) in L & D
  • Doula welcome in addition to your one support person
  • Only your support person will be allowed during postpartum stay
  • Hospital staff will pre-screen all visitors using standard screening questions.

Points of Entry Restricted to:

  • Entrance on Murphy Ave
    • Daily 6 am – 8 pm
  • Entrance on Patterson St.
    • 24/7

Williamson Medical

  • Limited to 1 support person
  • No children under 18 allowed including siblings

NorthCrest in Springfield

  • 1 support person and your doula
  • No visitor under 16
  • Arm bands not shareable


  • No children visitors including siblings
  • 2 visitors per patient
  • Screening for symptoms

Baby & Co Birth Center

  • 2 support people and doula.
  • If no doula, then 2 support people
  • No children

We hope this helps you plan for your best support durng your birth. We will strive to keep this blog updated as soon as we are notified of changes.

Take care and keep safe.


Marcie Hadley, CD(DONA), PCD(DONA), CLC, and LCCE(LAMAZE), has been serving families since 2010. She especially enjoys getting to know her families, meeting their unique needs, and sharing evidence-based care information. Marcie has worked with unmedicated, medicated, C-section, family friendly C-Section, and VBAC labors, Her postpartum experience includes working with families of first children to families of 10. She has worked with mothers who have experienced postpartum depression and illness following birth. Her goal is to empower mothers in their own mothering wisdom.

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