Anyone give birth in a MA birth center rather than a hospital?

  1. You have chosen to ignore posts from TTsand. Show TTsand's posts

    Anyone give birth in a MA birth center rather than a hospital?

    Hello,

    I am starting to research my options regarding birth centers in Massachusetts and would love any input that you ladies could give!

    First off, I'm 8 weeks pregnant and will be due in February 2012. Still early, but I'm hoping and hoping that everything will go okay and that I'll be able to deliver naturally when my time comes.

    I've been pretty surprised to find out that for a "progressive" state, Massachusetts only has two birth centers. I've known for years that (health permitting) I did not want to have a child in a hospital if I could help it. 

    1 center is in Cambridge (Cambridge Birth Center) and the other is in Beverly. I live in Somerville, so the Cambridge center seems like it would make the most sense. However, there seems to be some discussion out there about their high hospital transfer rate which makes me nervous. Unfortunately, there isn't much information on their website about what would warrant a transfer. I also heard that they don't let women stay for very long after the birth and they will try to discharge you within a few hours. I'm new to all of this and that seems somewhat wrong to me.

    The Beverly birth center sounds a whole lot better and they have the option of staying at Beverly Hospital after the birth so you can take advantage of the lactation consultants and other help. They also seem to have better reviews - but again, there just isn't much information out there to help with my decision. One issue with Beverly is the distance. Is it too far from Somerville in the event of a snow storm?

    Sorry for the long post! If anyone has any feedback on the two centers or any other additional information, I'd appreciate it. Right now, I'm seeing a midwife at Harvard Vanguard in Kenmore but they only deliver at Brigham and Woman's. I'd like to transfer my care to a center around the middle of my pregnancy.

    Thank you!!


     
  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from thistleflower. Show thistleflower's posts

    Re: Anyone give birth in a MA birth center rather than a hospital?

    A friend who is planning to give birth at the Cambridge center has said that she was told that the high transfer rate is because MA law requires a pediatrician present if there's any meconium, and so they transfer in all such cases to get access to a pediatrician.  Your midwife would go with you to the hospital if necessary.  Beyond that I don't have much input, but I have also heard good things about the midwives at Mount Auburn--as compared to many hospitals it seems like they have a fairly independent practice within the hospital.  I think their website (easily found by google) gives a good sense of their general philosophy. 

    I've thought of transferring to a birth center too, but have marginal placenta previa and may need a caesarian for that--so I'm waiting until my next ultrasound at 30 weeks before I decide anything.  If I'm going to need a c-section I might as well do it at MGH.
     
  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from aad. Show aad's posts

    Re: Anyone give birth in a MA birth center rather than a hospital?

    The Beverly Birth Center is phenomenal and you will get the best care you have ever received in your life.
    And the maturnity nurses at Bev Hospital exceeded my expectations as well, so i had a great experience there (but I also live 3 miles away!)
     
  4. You have chosen to ignore posts from ajuly09. Show ajuly09's posts

    Re: Anyone give birth in a MA birth center rather than a hospital?

    I know that this doesn't answer your question about the birth centers, but I delivered at Mt. Auburn with a midwife and highly recommend it.  They truly follow your wishes for the type of birth you want and I really didn't feel like I was in a hospital at all.   
     
  5. You have chosen to ignore posts from TTsand. Show TTsand's posts

    Re: Anyone give birth in a MA birth center rather than a hospital?

    Thanks for all the input so far. Maybe I should check out Mt. Auburn...seems like there are a lot of good reviews for them.
     
  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from lemonmelon. Show lemonmelon's posts

    Re: Anyone give birth in a MA birth center rather than a hospital?

    I also chose Mt Auburn after a lot of research. I LOVED it and had a wonderful experience through my prenatal visits, birth, and the services they provide after with support groups and LCs. I would highly recommend it.

    I'd check out the mothering forums for info if you're looking for a low-intervention birth. The Cambridge Birth Center has pretty bad word-of-mouth on there -- some of the stories are downright alarming. Most of the women seem to prefer Mt Auburn or Newton-Wellesley.
     
  7. You have chosen to ignore posts from lemonmelon. Show lemonmelon's posts

    Re: Anyone give birth in a MA birth center rather than a hospital?

    TT -- since you're right in Somerville, why don't you pop over to Mt Auburn for a Meet the Midwives session? I found it incredibly inspiring -- they talked about how birth is an empowering feminist act, and all this awesome stuff that makes you want to pound your chest and bellow. You can ask questions and tour the birth center. And they give you snacks!

    Mt Auburn is great. You can give birth in a giant pool or on a ball or in the tub. You can give birth standing with midwives holding you up by your arms if you want. The birth center is gorgeous, and the food is great. And the center for women provides really great care -- at every visit they asked me what my questions and opinions were, and seemed kind of disappointed if I didn't have any. They want you to be really involved in the process and make your own decisions -- a concept that other places seem to find stupid and indulgent.

    A warning: some of the midwives wear open-toe shoes. Shocking, I know, but I suppose you have to take the birkenstocks along with the rest of the hippy.
     
  8. You have chosen to ignore posts from thistleflower. Show thistleflower's posts

    Re: Anyone give birth in a MA birth center rather than a hospital?

    Lemon, thanks for the information.  That sounds like exactly what I want (birkenstocks and all) and while my prenatal care at MGH has been fine, I haven't always loved my experiences there and don't trust them to let me make my own decisions about birth.  If it turns out I don't need a scheduled c-section I will definitely attend one of their sessions.
     
  9. You have chosen to ignore posts from TTsand. Show TTsand's posts

    Re: Anyone give birth in a MA birth center rather than a hospital?

    In Response to Re: Anyone give birth in a MA birth center rather than a hospital?:
    [QUOTE]TT -- since you're right in Somerville, why don't you pop over to Mt Auburn for a Meet the Midwives session? [/QUOTE]

    That's a great idea. I'll check out their website for the next meet-up. Thanks!

     
  10. You have chosen to ignore posts from lemonmelon. Show lemonmelon's posts

    Re: Anyone give birth in a MA birth center rather than a hospital?

    In Response to Re: Anyone give birth in a MA birth center rather than a hospital?:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Anyone give birth in a MA birth center rather than a hospital? : That's a great idea. I'll check out their website for the next meet-up. Thanks!
    Posted by TTsand[/QUOTE]
    If you don't like it at least you'll have had the snacks!
     
  11. You have chosen to ignore posts from Effrontery. Show Effrontery's posts

    Re: Anyone give birth in a MA birth center rather than a hospital?

    Ladies, I hate to be "that mom" but... I had my son at a local hospital with a gorgeous set-up but no NICU.  The labor and delivery was great, until he was born with severe medical problems.  Watching my son packed into an ambulance to Boston while I checked myself out against medical advice with no post-natal care, not so great.  I would never ever recommend giving birth anywhere without a NICU. (And I was Ms.  meditation-ball water-birth before, so this is not a philosophical thing.)

    Baby #2 was born at Beth Israel.  Excellent, world class medical care, but it is NOT what you are looking for if you want the midwife experience. Very clinical, very strict protocol.  I was very satisfied; it was what I needed to reassure me.

    My sister had her baby at Mt. Auburn (Cambridge birkenstocks doula, the whole natural thing). They followed her birth plan to a T, even when circumstances arose when most hospitals would have gone for the emergency c-section.  Baby and mama were perfect, and she went back to Mt. Auburn for the sequel, also with great results.

     
  12. You have chosen to ignore posts from culhasa. Show culhasa's posts

    Re: Anyone give birth in a MA birth center rather than a hospital?

    Thistle - you mentioned that you are at MGH...I had both my sons there and loved the experience there.  Unfortunately I did end up with 2 c-sections (complications with the first) and just not progressing with the second...but loved the experience there.  I thought the doctors and nurses were fantastic.  Good luck!!  (And I hope you don't need a c-section...although it isn't that bad!!)
     
  13. You have chosen to ignore posts from Mommyfirst. Show Mommyfirst's posts

    Re: Anyone give birth in a MA birth center rather than a hospital?

    I sure wish I choose a birth center.  The hospital experience for me was clinical, cold and supremely frustrating.  The Doctors assume you know nothing and make all the decisions based on fear of being sued.  I would strongly urge anyone who doesn't have to be at a hospital to go somewhere where you and you plans will be respected.  I guess I am bitter ;). 
     
  14. You have chosen to ignore posts from octofrog. Show octofrog's posts

    Re: Anyone give birth in a MA birth center rather than a hospital?

    Mt Auburn has a Level 2 NICU in case the baby needs it. 
     
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