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Having a Baby? Please Read This First!

It’s safe to say that having a baby is one of the most life-changing experiences a woman or a family will ever have. We encourage you to think the process all the way through as you begin to seek pregnancy ob-gyn care.

Most women ask friends about their provder. “Who was your doctor? What did you think?”  That’s really important feedback, and we encourage you to seek it.

However, that’s also where most women stop their research, and that’s a shame, because it doesn’t extend to the last part of the journey.  The question of “Where will I have my baby, and what do I want that experience to be like?” is equally important.  In fact, some women will argue that it’s even more important! This is especially true for women who have had contrasting experiences in the births of multiple children.

We strongly encourage you to do your research upfront.  Ask yourself these questions:

  • Where do I want to have my baby? How far am I willing to drive?
  • What kind of experience do I want to have? Do I want it to feel like a hospital or have more of a family setting?
  • In light of COVID-19 concerns, am I willing to be shuttled around the hospital or do I want everything to happen in one room? Do I want to be in a large hospital or in a smaller setting…one with comprehensive services but fewer patients?

Once you’ve answered those questions, it’s time to do take two very important steps.

First, tour some of your options, like the North Ottawa Family Birthing Center. Check them out, ask questions, and get a sense for how the process would work. Don’t be afraid to ask any question that comes to mind.

Once you’ve chosen the birthing location that fits your needs best, then ask the staff if the physician you would like to select has privileges there. This is a very important step. Given the complexities of today’s medical scene, you simply can’t make any assumptions, even if the physician’s office is located on a hospital campus! And since there are many excellent providers but a very small number of hospitals, we suggest you start with the birthing center and work backwards.  If you are looking for a recommendation on a provider, the staff at your chosen birthing center can also offer options and feedback. They’re a good resource because they see so many different physicians.

The NOCHS Family Birthing Center is special, and we would love to share it with you through a tour.  Our Family Birthing Center is designed for a comfortable experience. You will labor, give birth and recover all in the same room.  On the happy day, there’s plenty of space for mom, baby and family to be together in our large rooms. Mom is encouraged to stay with the infant 24/7, while receiving support for breastfeeding and newborn care.  You will see a minimal number of different staff because you stay in the same place.

NOCHS also deserves consideration from a quality standpoint. NOCHS has achieved the designation of Blue Distinction Center for Maternity Care from Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. This means that NOCHS delivers excellent quality care. Moms who plan to come to the Family Birthing Center write up specific care plans. This plan includes topics such as anesthesia preference, immunizations, cultural considerations and more. NOCHS also offers an innovative Perinatal Mood Disorders program to support mothers during and after pregnancy.

If you’re reading this and wishing you had taken some of these steps earlier in your pregnancy, don’t worry! It’s not too late. While we would love to get to know you before the big day, we are ready and more than capable of caring for you and your baby any time you decide to come visit us!

Please call the NOCHS Family Birthing Center at 616.847.5337 with any questions or to get more information.

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