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Midwifery Services

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The Midwife Birth Experience

The Certified Nurse-Midwives of Redwood City are honored to be present with you on this wonderful and miraculous journey. “Midwife” traditionally means “with woman”. You can visit with a midwife at any time during your prenatal care. We attend approximately two-thirds of all Redwood City Kaiser vaginal deliveries and assist with most Cesarean section. We will work with you and, if you desire, your personalized birth plan, to keep your birth experience as close to what you want as possible. What follows is a review of the Redwood City Midwives’ Birth Experience, our “birth plan” for you, to ensure a safe delivery and wonderful memory.

Who We Are

Certified Nurse-Midwives are registered nurses with a Masters of Science in Nursing from a nationally accredited higher learning institution and a national certification from the American College of Nurse Midwives. We are widely recognized as experts in the care of healthy women. At Redwood City Kaiser we are focused on prenatal care, medically uncomplicated birth and postpartum follow up. We work closely with our physician colleagues. An obstetrician is on-site 24 hours a day for immediate consultation and/or assistance.

The Midwife Class

We invite you to come meet us, learn more about our services at Redwood City and ask us any questions that you have. We have an event almost every month either at the Redwood City or San Mateo office, typically from 6:30-8:30 pm where we give an informal talk, answer questions from you, and stick around afterwards to meet with you individually. Please call Health Education at 650-299-2433 to get the current Midwife Class schedule and register for the event. We look forward to seeing you there!

Our Goals, Your Rights

Our goal is the same as yours: healthy mom, healthy baby. We seek to earn your trust and want to work with you toward this goal. We believe every birth is unique and every woman and her family have the right to make informed choices regarding their care; all of which, will be treated with respect for their individuality and personal preferences. We will provide our best support and advice based on our training, knowledge and experience. We understand that it is disappointing if special circumstances arise that cannot be predicted and plans or intentions must be modified. We will work with you through all medical decisions, providing sensitive explanations and support.

Our Labor and Delivery Suite

Our private labor/delivery rooms are comfortably appointed for the mother and her support people with the following:

  • State-of-the-art birthing bed (complete with squatting bar)
  • Pull-out full size bed for your support person
  • Rocking chair
  • Private bathroom with shower
  • Flatscreen TV with cable stations, movies, wifi for internet surfing
  • Lights that dim
  • Refrigerator for your personal use
  • Our birthing rooms are designed so that even women with an IV and those who require continuous fetal monitoring are able to change positions and move around the labor room.
  • Watch a virtual tour of our labor and delivery center at Kaiser Permanente Hospital in Redwood City.

Midwifery Care

Certified Nurse-Midwives are in attendance seven days a week, 24 hours a day. We have a very low Cesarean section rate and we are proud of that! We adhere to the following practices on a regular basis:

  • We support the people who are there to support the laboring woman – family members, friends and doulas.
  • We fully support the intention of women who would like an unmedicated birth.
  • We likewise support women who desire a birth that is as pain free as possible. We provide medication to decrease the pain of labor and work closely with our anesthesia department to order epidural anesthesia at the best time.
  • We strongly recommend childbirth preparation classes to help women and their birth partners understand the natural process of labor and giving birth. Classes also explain coping skills for early labor, when it is too early in the process for most to receive an epidural. In addition, they introduce some of the medical interventions that are sometimes necessary to insure a healthy outcome.
  • Not every woman needs an IV, but it may be recommended on a case by case basis for medication, hydration, preparation for an epidural or as a safety precaution.
  • We can monitor the baby intermittently if the baby is handling labor well, based on a review of the initial fetal heart rate, and if the woman is unmedicated and there are no other complicating factors.
  • We believe most women should eat lightly according to preference and drink frequently during labor, though there are some circumstances where this may be restricted. We can provide refreshments or you may bring your own.
  • Once the baby’s initial status is assessed, women can walk, utilize a variety of labor positions, or try a warm shower to help labor move along. We encourage you to bring your own “birthing ball”, if you like, and your own music, to set the right atmosphere for you. Women who have an epidural are restricted to bed rest.
  • We do not do routine enemas, shaves or episiotomies. We do not routinely utilize internal monitors or other interventions.
  • We work with you during the pushing phase and crowning to ease the baby out and prevent perineal tearing.
  • When possible, we encourage mothers to reach down and help deliver their babies if they would like.
    Unless otherwise indicated, the mother’s significant other will cut the umbilical cord.
  • We place the baby directly on the mother’s abdomen when he/she is born so that mother and baby can maintain skin to skin contact.

Postpartum Care

Breastfeeding is encouraged to begin immediately. Unless there is a special circumstance, babies are weighed in the birthing room. The new family will stay together in the birthing room for approximately two to three hours after delivery. Babies and mothers are roomed together on the postpartum floor to promote bonding and successful lactation.

Lactation educators and consultants are available most days to answer questions and provide one-on-one support. All of our private postpartum rooms have full size pull out beds to accommodate your significant other who is encouraged to stay with you for your entire hospital stay. Families are discharged 24-48 hours after a normal delivery and within 3-4 days after a Cesarean birth.