Labor & Birth
The midwives encourage and help you to formulate your birth plan long before the big day arrives. Toward the end of pregnancy, the midwives review your vision and wants for your birth. All clients are encouraged to attend one of the childbirth classes recommended by the birth center midwives. These classes are important in educating yourself on all of the birth choices and comfort measures available to you for your planned natural birth.
When the “big day” arrives, you will be in contact with your midwife before you arrive at the birth center. You coordinate with her when the best time is for you to come in. During your labor we want you to eat, drink, move, rest, sleep, get in water, and move in any other position that you desire. Your birthing space is respected, the lights are kept dim, voices are quiet, and interruptions are minimal. When the midwife listens to baby during labor, she moves to a position to accommodate you. We have deep soaking birth tubs, birth stools, a yoga sling, peanut balls, exercise / birth balls, yoga mats, and nitrous oxide available for you to use. We understand that the birth of a child is an event to be celebrated.
After the birth, we routinely delay cord clamping and keep baby skin-to-skin with mom. The midwives or doula assist with nursing and support family to bonding during these precious first hours. The average stay at the birth center about six hours after birth.
Midwives are trained professionals and experts in natural birth. Midwifery care is centered around and individualized for each woman. Instead of treating a problem, the midwife focuses on prevention. During each hour-long prenatal visit, the client and midwife review diet, exercise, supplements, sleep habits, sources of stress, discomforts, and concerns. The birth center midwives merge medical and holistic, natural remedies. Every recommendation is customized to the client and her individual needs. The midwives get to know you as a person and discuss your desires and fears for your birth.
Initial appointments are usually scheduled between 10 and 12 weeks. (This is when baby’s heartbeat can usually be heard with a doppler). Appointments with the midwives are scheduled every 4 weeks in early pregnancy. Starting at 28 weeks, appointments are every 2 weeks and starting at 36 weeks, appointments are weekly. During an appointment the providers check your blood pressure, temperature, weight, feel and measure baby, and listen to baby’s heartbeat. Family and support people are always welcome to prenatal appointments.
We understand finances are an important consideration. Our fees are LESS THAN HALF of what it would cost to give birth in a hospital. Our fees are disclosed before you sign up so there are no surprise bills. The birth center has many payment options to make midwifery care accessible to everyone.
- Insurance – Every policy is different, but most policies will provide some coverage for birth center services. We verify benefits and file claims using Larsen Billing. We cannot bill Medicaid or Tricare.
- In-house financing – The birth center offers easy payment plans to everyone. Payments can be scheduled to fit your budget. HSA/FSA cards with a credit card logo accepted.
- United Medical Credit – Has multiple plans to choose from. Thousands of patients have trusted United Medical Credit to secure affordable payment plans for their procedures. The application process is fast and easy with no commitment. Click the link to the right to see your loan options.
Sonograms & Labs
The midwives review your health history at your first prenatal visit to help determine which labs are recommended for your pregnancy. If you are transferring into the birth center for care later in pregnancy, we can request records from your previous provider so we do not duplicate any labs that have already been done. We offer genetic screening tests where you can choose to find out gender as early as 10 weeks. The providers also collect all routine labs at the birth center so there is no wait or need for additional appointments at a lab.
Sonograms or ultrasounds are usually only done in the second trimester. When done at this time, the technician can usually determine gender, if desired. Early sonograms can be requested in the first trimester of pregnancy to establish an accurate due date and are sometimes done when a pregnancy goes past 41 weeks. The midwives refer to an imaging center with many locations to make obtaining an appointment easier.
Newborn Hearing Screening
The birth center offers hearing screens. Newborn hearing screening is a painless test done to your baby to check his or her hearing, usually at your first postpartum visit at the birth center. Two to three babies born daily in Texas are hard of hearing or deaf, so screening is highly recommended by the midwives. This testing is generally considered preventative and often reimbursed by your insurance. We provide you with a letter for your baby’s primary doctor with results of the screening and an itemized statement to submit to insurance for reimbursement.
Childbirth classes help build your confidence in your body’s ability to give birth. Classes are highly recommended for all first time parents. Parents and support people learn what can be expected in labor and birth. Instructors teach you relaxation techniques, labor positions, and comfort measures. You can discuss your fears and desires about labor and birth with the instructor and other couples. Topics covered are important for all expectant parents, no matter where you choose to birth your baby. Learning what to expect during each stage of labor can reduce fears and prepare you for the journey ahead.