I went to the local hospital today to inquire about volunteering -- ya know, knocking out some of those 1,000 clinical contact hours. The receptionist took my info and emailed a one-page sheet about the process. I am going to have to wait for the emailed invite to the orientation, which should be within the next couple of weeks. Then a TB test, bacground check, and a physical. A physical? I don't get it, but ok!
They have no neo natal unit, which I just recently found out exactly what that was :OI -- a new baby unit. Hey, I never knew that place actually had a name besides 'the baby nursery' =D. But without one, it means baby, mama, and other family members are always together :O)
My first choice would not have been the hospital. I would much rather start volunteering at a birthing center or something like that -- a very natural setting. However, I started thinking about it and realized it's such a great place to start. I plan on volunteering in a different setting like a birth center eventually and with a midwife, but in the meantime a hospital provides a perfect opportunity for a cross-cultural comparison and understanding the workings of different birth institutions, an ethnology! I know I will be working with breastfeeding women who experience hospital birth as well as home birth and birthing center deliveries and birth in other places, and I think it will be such a great experience to have a well-rounded knowledge of all of these areas.