When I first experienced the birth center model of care as a client, I was so focused on the excellent prenatal care and different model for birth that I did not realize “birth center” encompasses so much more. As we explored the model of care in our start-up phase looking at other birth centers, the depth of the community support and access point for the medical system was our goal.
The Business of Being Born recently featured the Health Foundations Birth Center in Minnesota, who has beautifully achieved this “birth center” model of care with the depth of services that have come to define the birth center experience. Amy Johnson-Grass, the birth center’s founder and the current President of the American Association of Birth Centers explains:
We are unique because we are a lot more than just a birth center and midwifery practice. We are truly an integrative practice with a huge spectrum of offerings on-site. We are not only familiar with herbs, homeopathy, nutrition, and counseling, but we are also prescribers. Plus, we have other providers that work with us too, like chiropractors and acupuncturists. We’re a lactation center. We’re an education center with lots of different class offerings. And, we offer quite a few services for women, outside of maternity care, like annual exams, problem visits, and contraception offerings. This continuity of care (even extending to their kids with our Pediatricians!) really allows for us to focus on community building, which is so important because so many of us lack it. So we hold many events to continue and build those connections ranging from larger gatherings like Every Woman Can to smaller retreats, family picnics, and annual Valentine’s Day party…during Christmas we have about 100 kids come through to see Santa!
Read the entire interview and see more photos of the beautiful birth center.