If you would like to have your baby in a hospital with a midwife, you can get your care through one of the group midwifery practices in Bellevue, Olympia, Seattle, and Tacoma. Nurse midwives take care of low and medium risk pregnancies and are experts in the normal birth process. Whether you are hoping for a natural birth or plan on pain medication, a midwife can guide you through your options and the birth process.
Nurse midwives follow the same visit schedule as obstetricians and family medicine doctors. They can prescribe medications and take care of you during labor, birth, and the postpartum period. You may choose to be seen by one midwife, but we recommend you meet the entire group, so that you are acquainted with everyone before you come in during labor. You may also have the option of joining a CenteringPregnancy group.
CenteringPregnancy is an approach to prenatal care that includes a traditional health check-up with additional time and attention in a group setting. Women meet with the midwife and with other women whose babies are due near the same time for 10 sessions during and after pregnancy.
CenteringPregnancy is a way to share learning and experiences with other pregnant women and be more involved in your own care. The model creates a community of caring new friends who encourage each other and many stay in touch after the babies are born. Research has shown that women who participate in the Centering model of care have fewer preterm and low birth weight babies. Satisfaction rates for this program are high.
A CenteringPregnancy mom stated that, "It's a great way to get information and share stories and get help from and with others. I think it was great! I wouldn't have changed anything!"
Another parent stated that, "[It is] very valuable spending more time with providers. We learned SO much and it's helpful to have other parents to commiserate with and think through questions."
Centering sessions are composed of about 8-12 families with similar gestational ages. There is 2-hour meetings held every four weeks and increased to every two weeks as the pregnancy progresses. Soon-to-be mothers learn many self-care skills, such as measuring their own weight and blood pressure. Women also discuss various subjects such as, nutrition, exercise, coping with labor, breast-feeding, and infant care in a supportive setting.