PHOTO: GEORGIE WILEMAN
Postoperative care is support for before and/or after surgery, including gender-affirming surgery or cesarian support. The needs of someone who just just undergone major surgery are specific, and postoperative doulas are there to provide a wide range of support.
Even five months post-op, my scars were very fresh... I had heard from friends and everything but that the first week was very hard.
Pre- and Post-operative support
Operation preparation is equally important for recovery. A postoperative doula is able to make suggestions for your home and environment to make recovery easier. They can also recommend recovery products, resources, blogs, and other community touch-points. Rainbow Doula DC works with all of the largest gender-affirming surgeons in the greater Washington, DC area.
The Facts, the FAQs, and the Fax
(Just kidding, we don't have a fax. You can find our contact information in this section, though!)
What is a postoperative doula?
The recovery after surgery (including cesarians or gender-affirming surgeries) can require extra help. We offer postoperative care to help someone prepare for surgery, as well as support the dignity of all persons during recovery.
why hire a postoperative doula?
For gender-affirming surgery (or cesarians), a little extra care may be necessary during recovery. This is especially true if you are traveling to the Washington, DC area to access your surgeon. Postoperative doulas provide nonjudgemental, professional care during recovery.
where do postoperative doulas work?
Postoperative doulas come to you: they will travel to your home to work with you in the space in which you are most comfortable. They can also provide transportation to-and-from your surgery location (within range). Sometimes the person undergoing surgery has traveled to access a specific surgeon and is recovering in a hotel, in which case the doula would go to the hotel to provide care.
How much does postoperative support cost?
Postoperative support varies based on the type of support a birthing person is looking for.
Pre-surgery Preparation Visit: A pre-surgery meeting is designed to prepare the recovery space, as well as share preparedness techniques with the person who will be going through surgery. This can be done virtually or in-person, and is $45.
Postoperative Care: Postoperative support is $20 per hour with a minimum of two hours.
Overnight Care: Overnight care is $150 for an 8-hour period.
The Full Package: This package includes one pre-surgery meeting, accompaniment to and from surgery, 8 hours of overnight care, and 8 hours of daytime care postoperatively and is $600.
affording postoperative support:
We know that affordability can sometimes be a barrier to doula support, and are happy to work with you on a plan that works best for you. Some ideas for affording doula support include: fundraising for doula support using a crowdsourcing platform; asking about zero-interest payment plans that Rainbow Doula DC offers; accessing the Rainbow Doula Community Pooled Fund.
how does covid-19 change things?
Gender-Affirming Surgery: Many gender-affirming surgeries are unfortunately being postponed because of COVID-19. Postoperative doulas can still offer pre-surgery preparation.
Cesarians: Right now, birthing folks and partners are not permitted to leave a hospital and come back once they are admitted, which means that if a person is recovering from a cesarian the person and partner may be spending several days in the hospital. For cesarian planning or recovery, postoperative doulas can make recommendations about recovery bags, perform virtual support calls, and do virtual home tours to make recommendations about creating a home space that is conducive to surgery recovery.
Schedule a free 15-minute consult with Rainbow Doula to get started on your doula journey. You can also email us with your questions.