Family-Centered Maternity Care Model Introduced at Crozer
- Crozer-Chester Medical Center is pleased to announce that its obstetricians and pediatricians are working in harmony to now offer patients the Family-Centered Maternity Care Model. Through this model of care, the focus is on the growth of the family rather than treating illness.
- This model emphasizes education on topics such as breastfeeding, what to expect at each stage of pregnancy, and infant care.
- Other aspects of the model include skin-to-skin contact between mother and baby, the same postpartum nurse caring for mother and baby, and the infant “rooming in” with the mother as much as possible. In addition, nurses and pediatricians carry out newborn examinations in the mother’s room as much as possible.
When a baby is born, so is a family. It has been extensively documented that immediate close contact and involvement between a mother and her newborn are best for both her and the baby.
Crozer-Chester Medical Center is pleased to announce that its obstetricians and pediatricians are working in harmony to now offer patients the Family-Centered Maternity Care Model. Through this model of care, women are even more intimately involved in the care of their newborn.
“When women come to the hospital to have a baby, they aren’t sick, they’re healthy. And they aren’t at the hospital to get well; they are there to have a wonderful family experience. Family-Centered Maternity Care recognizes those differences and celebrates the process of becoming a family or expanding a family,” says Thomas Bader, M.D., chairman of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Crozer-Chester Medical Center.
The model will be employed throughout labor and delivery, and the postpartum hospital stay. It emphasizes education on topics such as breastfeeding and infant care. Women are encouraged to get to know all the providers in her obstetrical practice, along with others who may be on call when it comes time to deliver. At Crozer, each obstetrical patient will receive a handout with photos and short biographies of all our obstetricians on staff.
Other aspects of the Family-Centered Maternity Care model include:
- Skin-to-skin contact immediately after delivery and during the mother’s stay on the postpartum unit. This helps to encourage breastfeeding (and make it more successful), reduces infant crying and helps to keep the baby warm.
- Couplet care: Couplet care means that one nurse will be assigned to look after both mom and baby while on the postpartum unit.
- “Rooming in”: This concept goes hand-in-hand with couplet care. Rooming in means that the baby spends its time in the room with its mother as much as possible rather than separated from mom in the hospital nursery. Like the skin-to-skin concept, rooming in encourages bonding and breastfeeding, and gives the new mother (and father) the opportunity to get used to and respond to the baby’s needs.
- Examinations in the mother’s room: If the baby’s in the room with mom and dad, that’s where nurses and pediatricians carry out their exams and assessments. New equipment will permit pediatricians to perform exams in the mom’s postpartum room. This promotes education and communication.
“Couplet care allows physicians and nurses to make moms and their babies our number-one priority,” says Christopher Stenberg, MBCHB, FAAP, chairman of the Department of Pediatrics at Crozer. “Moms used to learn how to care for their baby from a large, extended family. This is not really the case anymore, so we want our moms to know that we are going to work with them, help them and take care of their babies while they are at Crozer.” Stenberg adds that not only does the Family-Centered Maternity Care model foster improved communication between moms and pediatricians, but it also allows them to get to know the physicians who may be caring for their children for many years to come.
Early feedback on this new model of maternity care has been very positive. The goal is to enhance patient satisfaction, encourage and promote early breastfeeding, and provide education and support for mothers and their families.
Together, Crozer and its sister hospital, Delaware County Memorial Hospital, deliver nearly 3,700 babies each year — more than any other hospital or health system in Delaware County. Moms who deliver at Crozer or DCMH can expect highly personalized care along with the comforts of home — including wireless Internet access in every patient room, premium toiletries for bathing, and “welcome baby” gifts. For more information, or for a referral to a Crozer or DCMH obstetrician/midwife, call 1-855-CK-BABIES (1-855-252-2243) or visit http://4ubaby.crozerkeystone.org.