Do you want to start a doula service and need to write a plan? If YES, here is a detailed sample doula business plan template & FREE feasibility report.

If you are interested in starting a business in the health cum maternity industry and you don’t have the financial requirements to start a standard hospital or maternity clinic, then you should opt for a doula service.

It is important to note that any healthcare related business, including doula services, requires that you first look at the existing laws in the country or the state you reside. Healthcare related businesses are usually highly regulated so as to guard against the infiltration of quacks.

So you need to pay a visit to the health and medical regulatory body in your country (the department/ministry of health and medical services) to get all the needed information before you can legally start your own doula service business.

A Sample Doula Services Business Plan Template

Industry Overview

Midwives and doulas are nonphysician healthcare providers that aid the delivery of babies and care of the mother. Players in the Midwives and Doulas industry basically offer care to childbearing women during their pregnancy, labor and during the postpartum period. They may also help care for the newborn through six weeks of age, including assisting the mother with breastfeeding.

The Midwives and Doulas industry is indeed a very massive industry in the U.S. and reliable statistics has it that in the United States of America, the industry is worth $3 billion, with an estimated growth rate of 2.8 percent between 2015 and 2020.

There are about 17,246 registered and licensed midwives and doulas service providers in the United States and they are responsible for employing about 22,058 people. It is important to state that this industry has no major players with a market share of greater than 5 percent.

A recent report published by IBISWorld shows that over the five years to 2019, the industry has benefited from increased demand due to expanding healthcare coverage of industry services and growing awareness of the benefits of doulas and midwife-led births to mothers, babies and the healthcare system.

Furthermore, demand for industry services has expanded due to the ability of midwives and doulas to reduce costs associated with pregnancy and birthing. Overall, industry revenue is anticipated to increase during the current period.

Over the five years to 2024, industry revenue is forecast to continue rising. The continued emphasis on collaboration between obstetricians and midwives will likely push midwifery closer to the mainstream, driving continued growth in midwife-attended births as a share of total births.

If you are considering starting your own doula services business in the United States, then you should try and work around the industry barriers. The truth is that the barriers to entry in the Midwives and Doulas industry are high due to the significant regulatory requirements and the experience and strength of incumbents.

For example, medical licensure creates a barrier to entry in the healthcare sector. If you are determined and you are ready to go all the way, you will surely succeed in establishing your doula services business in the United States of America and you will be glad you did because it is indeed a profitable line of business.

Executive Summary

Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC is a licensed and government approved midwives and doula services provider that will be located in the heart of Mount Pleasant, South Carolina – United States of America but will move across different cities and locations in the state. We have been able to acquire a standard and well – equipped ambulance that is highly suitable for the kind of business we want to operate.

Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC is in the Midwives and Doulas industry to provide professional care to childbearing women during their pregnancy, labor and during the postpartum period and we will also provide professional care for the newborn through six weeks of age, including assisting the mother with breastfeeding and other related medical services and practice.

We are well trained and equipped to service the market segments that require the healthcare services we will be offering. We are in the midwives and doulas services business to deliver excellent birthing care to all those who will patronize us.

We will also ensure that in the line of carrying out our duty, we comply with the laws and health regulations in South Carolina and The United States of America. Our employees are well trained and qualified to handle all our services. Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC will be on to clients 24 hours 7 days a week; we will be open round the clock to attend to clients (patients).

We have a standard help line/call center that is manned by trained health workers. Our employees are going to be well trained to operate within the framework of our organization’s corporate culture and also to meet the needs of our customers.

Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC will ensure that all our patients cum customers are given first class treatment whenever they hire our services. We have a CRM software that will enable us manage a one on one relationship with our customers no matter how large our customer base grows.

Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC is a family business that is owned and managed by Clara Morgan and her immediate family members. Clara Morgan is a qualified and well – trained Doula cum Midwife with over 15 years’ experience.

Our Services Offering

Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC is in the midwives and doula business to bring maternity care services closer to the people and our services will be carried out by highly trained professional midwives and doulas, who know what it takes to give our highly esteemed customers (patients) value for their money.

These are the health care services that Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC will be offering;

  • Help patients make decisions about their birthing plan
  • Provide care and regular exams throughout the intrapartum period
  • Assist mother with breastfeeding
  • Monitor the birth process, seeking a physician’s help if complications arise
  • Provide postpartum medical care to mothers and their newborns, if necessary
  • Assist mother with newborn care tasks
  • Offer companionship, coping skills and other forms of emotional support throughout intrapartum period

Our Mission and Vision Statement

  • Our vision is to become the number one choice when it comes to midwife and doula service delivery in the whole of South Carolina and also to be amongst the top 10 doula service providers in the United States of America within the next 10 years.
  • Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC is in business to establish a first – class midwife and doula service that will move from one location to another in order to take care of clients as long as they can afford our services.
  • We want to become one of the leaders in the Midwives and Doulas industry in South Carolina, and in the United States of America.

Our Business Structure

Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC will be built on a solid foundation. From the outset, we have decided to recruit only qualified professionals to man various job positions in our organization. We are quite aware of the rules and regulations governing the Midwives and Doulas industry which is why we decided to recruit only well experienced and qualified employees as foundational staff of the organization.

We hope to leverage on their expertise to build our brand to be well accepted in South Carolina and the whole of the United States.

When hiring, we will look out for applicants that are not just qualified and experienced, but honest, customer centric and are ready to work to help us build a prosperous business that will benefit all the stake holders (the owners, workforce, and customers).

As a matter of fact, profit-sharing arrangement will be made available to all our management staff and it will be based on their performance for a period of five years or more. These are the positions that will be available at Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC;

  • Chief Executive Officer
  • Doulas and Midwives
  • Accountant / Cashier
  • Client Service Executive / Call Center Agents
  • Driver

Job Roles and Responsibilities

Chief Executive Officer:

  • Responsible for providing direction for the business
  • Creating, communicating, and implementing the organization’s vision, mission, and overall direction – i.e. leading the development and implementation of the overall organization’s strategy.
  • Attend to high profile clients and severe medical cases
  • Responsible for fixing prices and signing business deals
  • Responsible for recruitment
  • Responsible for payment of salaries
  • Responsible for signing checks and documents on behalf of the company
  • Evaluates the success of the organization

Doulas and Midwives

  • Responsible for providing the mother with emotional, physical, moral, and educational support, especially during times when the father and other close relatives are unavailable.
  • Listening to the concerns and questions of the mother in a kind, non – judgmental way and offering the best possible advice.
  • Attending prenatal meetings to get to know the mother and establish her birth preferences and other requirements.
  • Remaining with the mother throughout labor and providing physical and emotional support during and after childbirth.
  • Visiting the home of the mother once she has been discharged and assisting with the care of the baby while the mother heals.
  • Providing practical support and advice to the mother after childbirth, like organizing the nursery, running errands, and assisting with breastfeeding and meal preparation.
  • Keeping up to date on childbirth support, birthing techniques, and pre and post-natal care by conducting research, networking with other Doulas and mothers, and attending workshops and lectures.
  • Assisting in whatever way possible to make the transition to motherhood easier.

Accountant/Cashier:

  • Responsible for preparing financial reports, budgets, and financial statements for the organization
  • Provides managements with financial analyses, development budgets, and accounting reports
  • Performs cash management, general ledger accounting, and financial reporting for one or more properties.
  • Responsible for developing and managing financial systems and policies
  • Responsible for administering payrolls
  • Ensuring compliance with taxation legislation
  • Handles all financial transactions for Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC
  • Serves as internal auditor for Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC.

Client Service Executive/Call Center Agent

  • Welcomes clients and potential clients by greeting them in person or on the telephone; answering or directing inquiries.
  • Ensures that all contacts with clients (e-mail, walk-In center, SMS or phone) provides the client with a personalized customer service experience of the highest level
  • Through interaction with clients on the phone, uses every opportunity to build client’s interest in the company’s products and services
  • Manages administrative duties assigned by the creative director in an effective and timely manner
  • Consistently stays abreast of any new information on the organizations’ products, promotional campaigns etc. to ensure accurate and helpful information is supplied to clients when they make enquiries

Driver

  • Responsible for driving ambulance or non – emergency medical vehicle from one location to another
  • Ensures that every part of the ambulance or non – emergency medical vehicle is functional, well – maintained and serviced so as to facilitate easy movement in case of emergency

SWOT Analysis

Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC is set to become one of the leading doula service providers in South Carolina which is why we are willing to take our time to cross every ‘Ts’ and dot every ‘Is’ as it relates to our business.

We know that if we are going to achieve the goals that we have set for our business, then we must ensure that we build our business on a solid foundation. We must ensure that we follow due process in setting up the business.

Even though our Chief Executive Officer (owner) has a robust experience in midwifery and doula services, we still went ahead to hire the services of business consultants that are specialized in setting up new businesses to help our organization conduct detailed SWOT analysis and to also provide professional support in helping us structure our business to indeed become a leader in the Midwives and Doula industry.

This is the summary of the SWOT analysis that was conducted for Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC;

  • Strength:

Our strength lies in the fact that we have a team of well qualified midwives and doulas – core professionals manning various job positions in our organization. As a matter of fact, they are some of the best hands in the whole of Mount Pleasant, South Carolina.

Our well branded ambulance and non – emergence medical vehicle, the business model we will be operating on, opening 24 hours daily and 7 days in a week, multiple payment options, and our excellent customer service culture will definitely count as a strong strength for us.

  • Weakness:

Our perceived weakness lies in the point that we are just starting out and we may not have the required finance to sustain the kind of publicity that we intend giving the business.

  • Opportunities:

The opportunities available to us are massive because the demand for doulas is high, particularly since the World Health Organization (WHO) recommended that every birthing woman should have a doula. So also, because the economy is expected to continue expanding, potential parents will likely feel more confident about their financial stability and consequent ability to get pregnant and give birth hence the need for our services.

  • Threat:

Some of the major threats that will confront us in this line of business is the fact that birth rate is dropping and same sex marriage is gaining ground in the United States and with same sex marriage there won’t be pregnancy and child birth hence our services will not be needed. Aside from that, people covered by private health insurance are more likely to use industry services frequently.

Therefore, the extent to which the US population is covered by private health insurance affects demand for healthcare services. An estimated 36.6 percent of industry revenue comes from private insurance. The number of people with private health insurance is expected to decrease in 2020, posing a potential threat to the industry.

MARKET ANALYSIS

  • Market Trends

The latest trend shows that this industry is anticipated to continue gaining acceptance from the mainstream medical community, becoming less of a fringe profession. This is expected to be compounded by growth in the number of births and continued expansion in the number of individuals with health insurance coverage. Growth in the number of births is anticipated to accelerate slightly, rising at an annualized rate of 2.8 percent.

Another trend in this industry shows that operators in this industry have started specializing or rather concentrating on a niche idea such as Birth Doula and Postpartum Doula to promote their services even though most often than not they usually offer all the services available to midwives and doulas.

Birth Doula – A doula is trained and experienced in childbirth and helps prepare the mother for birth by working with her to develop a birthing plan, educating her about the birthing process, providing her with emotional support and if desired, offering support services during and just after childbirth.

Postpartum Doula – A postpartum doula offers support services and education to the mother after the birth, including lactation education, baby care education, circumcision care education, emotional support and other similar services. Postpartum doulas ensure the mother is comfortable, hydrated and well-fed so that she can enjoy caring for her baby.

Our Target Market

Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC is in business to service a wide range of customers in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina – United States of America and other cities such as Columbia, Charleston, and North Charleston et al.

We will ensure that we target both self – pay customers (who do not have health insurance cover), and those who have health insurance cover. Generally, our services are targeted at pregnant women and nursing mothers.

The fact that we are going to open our doors to a wide range of customers does not in any way stop us from abiding by the rules and regulations governing the Midwives and Doulas industry in the United States. Our staff are well – trained to effectively service our customers and give them value for their monies.

Our Competitive Advantage

Aside from the competition that exists amongst various midwives and doula services, they also compete against other healthcare providers such as maternity clinics, home health care services providers, health centers and standard hospitals et al.

To be highly competitive in the midwives and doulas industry means that you should be able to deliver consistent quality patient service and should be able to meet the expectations of your patients at all time; they should experience excellent birthing experience and postpartum experience.

Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC is coming into the market well prepared to favorably compete in the industry. We will ensure that our birth doulas complete 7 to 12 hours of childbirth education, 16 hours of birth doula training, and attend at two to five births. Also, our postpartum doula attends about 27 hours of postpartum doula education and assists two or more women with postpartum support before deploying them to the field.

We are going to be one of the few midwives and doula service providers in the whole of South Carolina that will run a standard medical call center for 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. We have enough trained health workers that are ready to run a shift system.

Lastly, all our employees will be well taken care of, and their welfare package will be among the best within our category in the industry. It will enable them to be more than willing to build the business with us and help deliver our set goals and objectives.

SALES AND MARKETING STRATEGY

  • Sources of Income

Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC will ensure that we do all we can to maximize the business by generating income from every legal means within the scope of our industry. Below are the sources we intend exploring to generate income for Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC;

  • Help patients make decisions about their birthing plan
  • Provide care and regular exams throughout the intrapartum period
  • Assist mother with breastfeeding
  • Monitor the birth process, seeking a physician’s help if complications arise
  • Provide postpartum medical care to mothers and their newborns
  • Assist mother with newborn care tasks
  • Offer companionship, coping skills and other forms of emotional support throughout intrapartum period

Sales Forecast

It is important to state that our sales forecast is based on the data gathered during our feasibility studies, market survey and also some of the assumptions readily available on the field. We have been able to examine the midwives and doula services market, we have analyzed our chances in the industry and we have been able to come up with the following sales forecast.

Below is the sales projection for Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC it is based on the location we cover and of course the wide range of our doula services and target market;

  • First Year (FY1): $100,000 (From Self – Pay Clients / Patients): $150,000 (From Health Insurance Companies)
  • Second Year (FY2): $150,000 (From Self – Pay Clients / Patients): $250,000 (From Health Insurance Companies)
  • Third Year (FY3): $250,000 (From Self – Pay Clients / Patients): $500,000 (From Health Insurance Companies)

N.B: This projection was done based on what is obtainable in the industry and with the assumption that there won’t be any major economic meltdown and natural disasters within the period stated above. Please note that the above projection might be lower and at the same time it might be higher.

  • Marketing Strategy and Sales Strategy

The marketing and sales strategy of Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC will be based on generating long-term personalized relationships with customers. In order to achieve that, we will ensure that we offer all – round doula care services at affordable prices compared to what is obtainable in South Carolina.

All our employees will be well trained and equipped to provide excellent doula care services and customer service. We know that if we are consistent with offering high quality doula care service delivery, we will increase the number of our customers by more than 25 percent for the first year and then more than 40 percent subsequently.

Before choosing a location for our doula services business, we conducted a thorough market survey and feasibility studies in order for us to be able to penetrate the available market and become the preferred choice of expectant mothers in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, and other cities within the state where our services will be available.

We have detailed information and data that we were able to utilize to structure our business to attract the number of customers we want to attract per time.

We hired experts who have good understanding of the Midwives and Doulas industry to help us develop marketing strategies that will help us achieve our business goal of winning a larger percentage of the available market in South Carolina.

In summary, Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC Services will adopt the following sales and marketing approach to win customers over;

  • Introduce our midwifery and doula services by sending introductory letters to expectant mothers, households and health facilities all across South Carolina
  • Advertise our doula services and practice in community – based newspapers, local TV and local radio stations
  • List our doula services and practice on yellow pages ads (local directories)
  • Leverage on the internet to promote our doula services and practice
  • Engage in direct marketing
  • Leverage on word of mouth marketing (referrals)
  • Enter into business partnership with health management organizations, churches, and health insurance companies.

Publicity and Advertising Strategy

We are in the doula services business to become one of the market leaders and also to maximize profits hence we are going to explore all available conventional and non – conventional means to promote our doula services.

Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC has a long – term plan of opening of offices and extending our doula services in key cities around the United States of America which is why we will deliberately build our brand to be well accepted in Mount Pleasant before venturing out.

Here are the platforms we intend leveraging on to promote and advertise Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC;

  • Place adverts on both print (community – based newspapers and maternity and family related magazines) and electronic media platforms
  • Sponsor relevant community health programs
  • Leverage on the internet and social media platforms like; Instagram, Facebook, twitter, YouTube, Google + et al to promote our brand
  • Install our Bill Boards on strategic locations all around South Carolina.
  • Distribute our fliers and handbills in target areas
  • Ensure that all our workers wear our branded shirts and all our trailers, vehicles and ambulances are well branded with our company’s logo et al.

Our Pricing Strategy

Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC will work towards ensuring that all our services are offered at highly competitive prices compared to what is obtainable in the United States of America.

On the average, midwives and doula care service providers usually leverage on the fact that a good number of their clients do not pay the service charge from their pockets; private insurance companies, Medicare and Medicaid are responsible for the payment.

In view of that, it is easier for doula care service providers to bill their clients based in their discretion. However, in some cases, doula care service providers also adopt the hourly billing cum per visit billing method.

  • Payment Options

The payment policy adopted by Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC is all inclusive because we are quite aware that different customers prefer different payment options as it suits them but at the same time, we will ensure that we abide by the financial rules and regulation of the United States of America.

Here are the payment options that Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC will make available to her clients;

  • Payment via bank transfer
  • Payment with cash
  • Payment via credit cards
  • Payment via online bank transfer
  • Payment via check
  • Payment via mobile money transfer
  • Payment via bank draft

In view of the above, we have chosen banking platforms that will enable our client make payment for our services without any stress on their part. Our bank account numbers will be made available on our website and promotional materials.

Startup Expenditure (Budget)

The truth is that starting this type of business does not really come cheap. You would need money to secure a standard ambulance or non – emergency medical vehicle, you will need money to acquire medical equipment and supply and you would need money to pay your workforce and pay bills for a while until the revenue you generate from the business becomes enough to pay them.

The items listed below are the basics that we would need when starting our doula service business in the United States, although costs might vary slightly;

  • The total fee for registering the Business in the United States – $750.
  • Legal expenses for obtaining licenses and permits – $1,500.
  • Marketing promotion expenses for the grand opening of Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC in the amount of $3,500 and as well as flyer printing (2,000 flyers at $0.04 per copy) for the total amount of – $3,580.
  • The cost for hiring Business Consultant (writing business plan inclusive) – $2,500.
  • Cost for computer software (Accounting Software, Payroll Software, CRM Software, Microsoft Office, QuickBooks Pro, drug interaction software, Physician Desk Reference software) – $7,000
  • Insurance (general liability, workers’ compensation and property casualty) coverage at a total premium – $3,400.
  • The cost for acquiring an ambulance / non – medical emergency vehicle – $45,600.
  • The cost for renting and renovating an office facility (construction of racks and shelves) – $80,000.
  • Other start-up expenses including stationery ($500) and phone and utility deposits – ($2,500).
  • The operational cost for the first 3 months (salaries of employees, payments of bills et al) – $80,000
  • The cost for the purchase of furniture and gadgets (Computers, Printers, Telephone, TVs, tables and chairs et al) – $4,000.
  • The cost of launching a website – $700
  • Miscellaneous – $5,000

We would need an estimate of two hundred and fifty thousand dollars ($250,000) to successfully set up our midwives and doulas services business in Mount Pleasant – South Carolina.

Generating Funds/Startup Capital for Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC

Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC is a private business that will be owned and managed by Clara Morgan and her immediate family members. They are the financiers of the business, but may likely welcome partners later which is why they decided to restrict the sourcing of the startup capital for the business to just three major sources.

These are the areas we intend generating our start – up capital;

  • Generate part of the start – up capital from personal savings
  • Source for soft loans from family members and friends
  • Apply for loan from my Bank

N.B: We have been able to generate about $100,000 (Personal savings $80,000 and soft loan from family members $20,000) and we are at the final stages of obtaining a loan facility of $150,000 from our bank. All the papers and documents have been duly signed and submitted, the loan has been approved and any moment from now our account will be credited.

Sustainability and Expansion Strategy

The future of a business lies in the number of loyal customers that they have, the capacity and competence of their employees, their investment strategy and business structure. If all of these factors are missing from a company, then it won’t be too long before the business closes shop.

One of our major goals of starting Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC is to build a business that will survive off its own cash flow without injecting finance from external sources once the business is officially running. We know that one of the ways of gaining approval and winning customers over is to offer our doula services a little bit cheaper than what is obtainable in the market and we are prepared to survive on lower profit margin for a while.

Safe Hands® Midwives and Doulas Services, LLC will make sure that the right foundation, structures and processes are put in place to ensure that our staff welfare are well taken of. Our organizations’ corporate culture is designed to drive our business to greater heights and training and retraining of our workforce is at the top burner.

As a matter of fact, profit-sharing arrangement will be made available to all our management staff and it will be based on their performance for a period of three years or more. We know that if that is put in place, we will be able to successfully hire and retain the best hands we can get in the industry; they will be more committed to help us build the business of our dreams.

Check List/Milestone

  • Business Name Availability Check: Completed
  • Business Registration: Completed
  • Opening of Corporate Bank Accounts: Completed
  • Securing Point of Sales (POS) Machines: Completed
  • Opening Mobile Money Accounts: Completed
  • Opening Online Payment Platforms: Completed
  • Application and Obtaining Tax Payer’s ID: In Progress
  • Application for business license and permit: Completed
  • Purchase of Insurance for the Business: Completed
  • Acquiring an office facility and remodeling the office: In Progress
  • Conducting Feasibility Studies: Completed
  • Generating capital from family members: Completed
  • Applications for loan from the bank: In Progress
  • Writing of Business Plan: Completed
  • Drafting of Employee’s Handbook: Completed
  • Drafting of Contract Documents and other relevant Legal Documents: In Progress
  • Design of The Company’s Logo: Completed
  • Printing of Promotional Materials: In Progress
  • Recruitment of employees: In Progress
  • Purchase of Non – Emergency Medical Vehicle / Ambulances et al: In Progress
  • Purchase of the needed furniture, racks, shelves, computers, electronic appliances, office appliances and CCTV: In progress
  • Creating Official Website for the Company: In Progress
  • Creating Awareness for the business both online and around the community: In Progress
  • Health and Safety and Fire Safety Arrangement (License): Secured
  • Establishing business relationship with Private medical insurance companies, Medicare and Medicaid, vendors: In Progress.