Prenatal care at MCA begins with your initial free prenatal consultation which generally takes about an hour. We’ll share our history and philosophy, the pros and cons of both home and hospital birth, and answer any questions you may have. Consultations and most other visits take place in our office.
When making your appointment, you may request an individual consultation, or some private time with the midwife at the end of a group consultation for this purpose. This is your opportunity to discuss your current personal needs and explore issues such as your previous birth experience. Free of judgement or bias, we encourage you to share your hopes and fears for this pregnancy and birth, as well as your personal beliefs.
Your consultation visit allows you to see if we are the right midwifery practice for you.
Your First Prenatal Visit
Now that we’ve made the commitment to work together, you begin care with your first prenatal visit. We will discuss your medical, social, obstetrical, and gynecological history. We will provide a physical and pelvic exam and perform lab work. You will be oriented to the self-care concept of our practice and shown how to check your urine and weigh yourself. This visit lasts about one hour. Your subsequent visits will last about a half hour.
The prenatal care schedule consists of monthly visits until 26-28 weeks, then every two weeks until 36 weeks, and then weekly until your birth. Women having risk factors will individually schedule a visit with Capital Health’s Department of Maternal-Fetal Medicine, and a plan of care will be developed in conjunction with the perinatologist. While it is up to us to coordinate your care every step of the way, the perinatologists at Capital Health will work with us on a recommended plan for your care that is safe and evidence-based. A home visit will be done for those planning a home birth, usually around 35 to 36 weeks. We always encourage the involvement of your family and welcome them at your visits.
Your acceptance for midwifery care and home birth will be based on your low risk status, which we together reassess continually as your pregnancy progresses. We also request that you have a primary care doctor who attends to you for non-pregnancy related issues. At any time, if some aspect of your medical condition or history necessitates a hospital birth, we’ll continue to provide your care and you can birth with us at our hospital. Though rare, should any severe complications be beyond the scope of our practice, we’ll discuss options for transfer of care with you. We’ll still continue to provide the information and support you need.