Who is a Good Candidate for Birth Center Care?
Birth centers are an amazing option for most mothers with low-risk, healthy pregnancies. It allows them to have a natural birth in a home-like environment that is more comfortable compared to a hospital setting.
However, not everyone is suited for birth center births, whether due to a personal decision or a health-related concern. Midwifery care can accommodate most pregnancies except for high-risk cases (e.g. multiple pregnancies, chronic illnesses) that may make clients need a higher level of interventional care than we can provide.
The specific criteria for eligibility may vary depending on each birth center’s policy. Generally, though, the following individuals qualify for care:
- Low-Risk Pregnancies: these are normal pregnancies with no complications so far. The life and health of the baby are in line with normal pregnancy expectations.
- Healthy Pregnant Individuals: these are women with overall good health, without any chronic or severe medical conditions.
- No Previous Complications: if you have had a normal, uneventful vaginal birth previously, chances are that you can do it again without much trouble.
- Full-Term Pregnancy: these are pregnancies that have surpassed 37 weeks or beyond. Note that if you have had your prenatal care at the birth center, we closely monitor you until term or refer you to the hospital if need be.
- No Multiple Pregnancies: Birth centers generally do not handle multiple pregnancies (twins, triplets, etc.) since they can come with increased risks.
- Willingness to Have a Natural Birth: Birth centers are designed to support natural childbirth, so individuals who desire a birth experience with minimal medical interventions are usually preferred. We cannot provide interventions like epidurals. So if that is wanted, you might not feel suited to a birth center.
The American College of Obstetrician and Gynecologists recognizes that low-risk women, which is about 70-80% of the population, have better birth outcomes in a freestanding, nationally-accredited birth center. Anyone that wants an unmedicated birth and that is low-risk, should consider having their baby at a birth center.If you are ready to schedule your care, send us a message!