An excerpt from Wikipedia:
A labor doula or birth doula is someone (often trained, though this is not required) who provides non-medical support (physical and emotional) to a woman leading up to and during her labor and delivery, an aspect of care that was traditionally practiced in midwifery. A labor doula may attend a woman having a home birth or a woman laboring at home before transporting to a hospital or a birth center, where she will continue support. Doulas do not perform clinical duties such as heart rate checks or vaginal exams, or give medical advice. Labor doulas rely on techniques like massage, aromatherapy, visualization, positive positioning, emotional support, encouragement, and nurturing to help women through labor. Many offer phone and email support as well as prenatal and postpartum visits to ensure the mother is informed and supported. The terms of a labor/birth doula’s responsibilities are decided between the doula and the family. The doula is also an ally for the father or partner, who may have little experience with the labor process and may also find the process anxiety provoking. Often the doula will help the partner find ways to support the laboring woman. Studies have shown that childbirth education can help reduce paternal anxiety  and one of the doula’s roles is to educate. A responsible doula supports, encourages, and educates the father or partner in his or her support style rather than replacing them.
Dr. John Kennell, who has studied the impact doulas have on mothers, babies, and childbirth, says, “If a Doula were a drug, it would be malpractice not to use it”.
Hello, my name is Melissa, and I’m a Certified Birth Doula (CD; PALS), Passion For Birth – Childbirth Educator and soon-to-be Sacred Pregnancy Childbirth Educator! Mother of one beautiful baby girl, Molly. After my pregnancy and amazing birth team and childbirth experience, I realized the strong calling I have to children and birth. My objective for attending the Birth Doula Skills Workshop at Bastyr University, followed by the Passion For Birth Childbirth Educator workshop, and coming up on the Sacred Pregnancy Educator retreat, was to become more educated on the ins and outs of all types of births. I am following my passion for an empowering birth experience for all women.
My Doula fee includes: two prenatal visits, attending the entire labor and delivery (including one to two hours postpartum), and two postpartum visits. Prenatal (maternity) and postpartum (milestones) Photography services also available for additional fees on a client to client basis. My Doula fee is $700.00. My Doula fee with Birth Photography included is: $850.00. (Birth Photography value: $350.00; a savings of $200.00!) Please note that this fee is subject to change, please email me if you are interested in my services @ firstname.lastname@example.org or call me @ 206.779.6281 to set up an appointment for an interview today!