Many women develop a sense of comfort with their obstetrician/gynecologist (OB/GYN) and decide to seek pregnancy care through them. The benefits of using an OB/GYN include the availability of high level services which offer peace of mind, and often life-saving procedures when called for. OB/GYNs can often provide services such as cesarean birth operations, genetic testing, ultrasound, and other medical technologies. Additionally, their special training in placenta previa, preeclampsia, and other complications can help to manage those conditions with success. Anyone can find a high-quality OB/GYN to meet their needs by going through a conscientious series of steps.

First and foremost, ask for referrals. You can talk to your friends or loved ones for their recommendations or information on their positive experiences with a particular OB/GYN. Online peer reviews and patient reviews can also be revealing. You may get a referral list from your primary care physician or insurance provider. Once you find a couple of top candidates, call and check about getting an initial consultation so you can meet and get a feel for them and their practice.

Look for specialty focus. You should seek niche focus if you are facing a high-risk pregnancy. You want an OB/GYN who has experience with your specific concern or issue if you have previously experienced pregnancy complications or if you have a condition that increases your overall risk level.

Check the OB/GYN’s credentials. You want to know that the OB/GYN you are choosing has the proper medical knowledge and specialized training. Verify their board certification. You also want to be certain that there are not disciplinary actions or malpractice claims against them. Look up their license information with the Texas Medical Board. Another marker of credibility is membership in a professional organization, such as the Texas Medical Association.

Make sure that the hospital where your OB/GYN practices is high-quality. You want the hospital to have a great rating, because that translates to a better survival rate and lower risk of complications. The location of the hospital is another factor worth considering. You want to be certain that receiving care remains manageable, especially if you end up having to schedule unexpected appointments.

Consider your insurance coverage. While you want to focus as much as you can on quality, you will also need to ensure your insurance policy covers the doctor. You want to know what you will have to pay, as certain services—such as genetic testing—may require a significant contribution. Check which hospitals and OB/GYN doctors are in your network to control your costs. While finding the right OB/GYN is crucial, as a standard rule, it can be a good idea to stay in-network so your bills don’t balloon due to the unexpected.

There are various reasons that women choose to seek pregnancy care from an obstetrician/gynecologist. By carefully choosing your OB/GYN, you can verify that you will get the care you need in a setting that is both credible and comfortable.