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Japanese Maternity Hospitals. An Expat’s View.

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There are many small hospitals in Japan, including maternity hospitals that specialize in nothing but childbirth. The hospital that we eventually chose was named “Nagai Maternity Hospital.” Our doctor was Dr. Nagai. His father had built the hospital, and now the son owns and operates it. This is pretty common. His hospital is a fairly large facility, so he has another doctor working with him. That makes two doctors handling the entire hospital, including pre-natal care, birth and post-natal care (the hospital did not have a pediatrician). About five babies were born every day. The doctors were assisted by a number of nurses and support staff. Compared to hospitals in the USA, this hospital seemed small. But it was considered somewhat large and modern by Japanese standards. The big teaching hospitals in Tokyo and Yokohama probably feel more familiar to Americans, which is why many Americans prefer them.

If you don’t have a car, you may have to choose from the hospitals and birth clinics near where you live. Our city hall gave us a helpful guide for our local clinics and hospitals, containing a survey of mothers describing the maternity hospitals. This would have been very useful, except the hospitals we liked most (the ones with the most natural approaches to birth) wouldn’t accept twins.

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