This Birmingham facility is home to the best maternity care in the nation. Get an inside look

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I don’t know how anyone gets any work done with faces like baby Caleb’s around. Photo via Brookwood Baptist Health

Bringing a new bundle of joy into the world is one of the toughest (and most important) jobs anyone can take on. Outstanding maternity care is as vital as it is personal, and we took a look inside Princeton Baptist Medical Center, the highest-rated hospital in Birmingham when it comes to births. Check it out!

Best in the nation? Tell me more.

A community built on care. Photo via Brookwood Baptist Health

This summer, Princeton Baptist Medical Center made Newsweek’s 2020 list of Best Maternity Care Hospitals in the United States. It was one of two hospitals from the state of Alabama to make the list, and the only one in Birmingham.

The list recognizes facilities that have excelled in providing care to mothers, newborns and their families. If you’re curious to learn more about this impressive award, check out this article.

Princeton Baptist is one of the only hospitals in the state that utilized certified nurse mid-wives. This may sound like an antiquated term, but today, it’s a widely respected role in the medical field. Midwives are trained health professionals who assist women during labor & delivery and well as postpartum.

“The midwifery model of care is low-intervention, so many moms who want an unmedicated birth like having the option of a certified nurse-midwife.”

Sheila Lopez, Certified Nurse-Midwife, Princeton Baptist Medical Center

What to expect when you’re expecting.

There are so many factors to consider when it comes to care for mom and baby. Especially in today’s world of infinite internet information, it can be so hard to know what to even look for.

For some pregnant women, finding a facility that supports low birth intervention is key. What does that mean, exactly? I sought out advice from the experts: The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG).

According to ACOG’s Committee on Obstetric Practice, low intervention births in low-risk pregnancies can be the safest and most effective situations for all:

“Obstetrician–gynecologists, in collaboration with midwives, nurses, patients, and those who support them in labor, can help women meet their goals for labor and birth by using techniques that require minimal interventions and have high rates of patient satisfaction.

Many common obstetric practices are of limited or uncertain benefit for low-risk women in spontaneous labor.”

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists’ Committee on Obstetric Practice, endorsed by The American College of Nurse-Midwives

Essentially, a general consensus in the medical community is to keep interventions to a minimum as much as possible. That’s exactly what the team at Princeton Baptist Medical Center is prepared to do: help facilitate low-intervention birth experiences for their patients.

Of course, this is all in reference to low-to-normal-risk pregnancies. Any number of factors can increase a mother’s need for additional care, which is another reason you want to be in a hospital prepared to offer the best.

Hey, baby!

The tiniest firecrackers in town! Photo via Brookwood Baptist Health

Deciding on a birthing plan is deeply personal and completely unique to every mother. Some want 100% natural births, some want epidurals but overall fewer interventions—there’s no right or wrong way to bring your baby into this world.

Princeton Baptist offers a free Birth Navigator service to all patients. This service connects pregnant women to an expert who can help them prepare for birth. From discussing your labor options and birth preferences to providing an escorted facility tour to connecting you with prenatal classes and services, Birth Navigators are with you every step of the way.

When it comes to the big day, here are a few of the benefits you can expect:

  • Birthing Aids: birthing balls, childbirth squat bars, etc.
  • Nurse Midwifery: experienced healthcare professionals who use an individualized approach for your childbirth to be as natural as possible with minimal medical intervention.
  • Family Bonding: practices such as “rooming in,” skin-to-skin contact, etc.
  • Level III NICU: extensive medical services available on-site for premature and at-risk babies.
  • Hotel-Like Accommodations: a quiet, relaxed environment equipped with amenities such as labor tubs, a sleeper chair, complete bathroom with shower, etc.

Heading Home

Ok, those cheeks. I am not ok. Photo via Brookwood Baptist Health

No matter what your birth experience looks like, all new mothers need postpartum support. At Princeton Baptist, your postpartum recovery room is private and comfortable. Plus, your newborn can stay with you the entire time.

Breastfeeding is another personal choice a mother gets to make. Should you choose to breastfeed, it can be foreign and challenging at first. Certified lactation consultants are available 7 days a week to offer inpatient consultation and breastfeeding support.

If your little one needs some extra care, Princeton Baptist’s Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit is located right in the Birth Care Pavilion, so you’re never too far away.

They also offer NICVIEW cameras on each bed so that new parents can check in via webcam 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Read more about the NICU camera project here.

Want to learn more? Meet the OBGYNs and Nurse-Midwives here.

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Beth Cunningham
A Birmingham transplant who can usually be found hitting a new hiking trail or restaurant opening when she's not writing stories and snapping photos for Bham Now.
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