Frequently Asked Questions
What if my midwife is not on your list of Credentialed Providers?
Your midwife may apply to become credentialed at Our Birthing Center. We would encourage her to do so as soon as possible to ensure you know well in advance where you will be delivering.
What if I don’t have insurance or my insurance does not cover the birthing center?
Payment Plans are available for self paying clients. Financial Aid is available on a case-by-case basis. Please contact us to discuss further.
What is considered Low Risk?
Birth Center care is appropriate for women who are considered low risk and have had uncomplicated pregnancies. At each prenatal visit clients are assessed for their suitability to deliver at the birth center. Only patients who are determined to be low risk and able to undergo a normal delivery shall be admitted to Our Birthing Center.
Low Risk eligibility will be determined by your care provider based on criteria established by Our Birthing Center. The following are some examples which would disqualify patients from delivering at Our Birthing Center.
- Blood pressure: Patients with hypertension (high blood pressure) are ineligible for delivery at the birthing center. That includes pre-pregnancy / chronic hypertension and preeclampsia which is pregnancy induced high blood pressure.
- Breech position: A client who presents with breech position does not meet risk criteria for delivery at OBC.
- Cardiovascular: patients with documented cardiovascular problems such as heart disease, pulmonary embolism, moderate to severe cardiac murmurs or symptomatic congenital heart defects.
- Chromosomal abnormalities evidenced in amniotic fluid.
- Diabetes- insulin controlled. Gestational diabetes which is diet controlled may be eligible if cleared by our Collaborating Physician.
- Fetal growth: If Estimated Fetal Weight is less than 2500 gm or greater than 4000gm.
- Genital Herpes- Active within one week of delivery.
- Infection: untreated vaginal, urinary, or skin infections.
- Kidney issues- patients with moderate to severe renal disease; pyelonephritis.
- Multiple gestation - Twins, triplets, etc.
- Oligohydramnios- a condition in pregnancy characterized by a deficiency of amniotic fluid.
- Known abnormalities of the Placenta
- Premature labor - before 37 weeks
- Post Term labor- past 42 weeks into the pregnancy
- STD’s: Patients with active Sexually Transmitted Diseases such as HIV.
- Substance abuse: women with a history of substance abuse
What are some examples of instances which would necessitate a transfer?
The following conditions discovered during labor would cause a transfer from the birthing center to the hospital.
- Breech: if it is discovered during labor that the baby is in breech position, they would be transferred from the birthing center to the hospital.
- Prolapsed cord
- Fetal heart rate abnormalities
- Particulate meconium in amniotic fluid unless birth is imminent
- Placental Abruption
- Prolonged labor. For example, a patient with ruptured membranes greater than 24 hours without active labor.
- Uterine Rupture
The following conditions discovered postpartum would necessitate a transfer from the birthing center to the hospital.
- Soft tissue problems such as marked edema of cervix, severe hematoma or laceration requiring repair by physician including 4th degree laceration.
- Blood loss estimated to be greater than 500cc.
- Postpartum hemorrhage failing to respond to appropriate management.
- Maternal seizures
- Any condition requiring more than 12 hours of continuous postpartum observation.
The following conditions discovered with the newborn would necessitate an infant transfer from the birthing center to the hospital.
- Apgar score of less than 7 at 5 minutes.
- Congenital anomaly requiring immediate acute care
- Persistent hypothermia (less than 96o F after 2 hours of life) in spite of warming measures.
- Immediate jaundice
- Severe or worsening respiratory distress
- Difficult resuscitation
- Exaggerated tremors or any seizure activity
- Any condition requiring more than 12 hours of continuous post-delivery observation.
What if there’s an emergency?
The birthing center is equipped to handle routine deliveries. A practitioner noting the presence of factors which require emergency care in a hospital setting will immediately arrange for transfer to Morristown Medical Center for collaborative or physician management. Decision regarding the need for, and mode of transport for emergency care will be made by your care provider. Emergency transfer procedures for mother and infant are known by all staff members and drills are held at regular intervals. Your care provider will accompany you to the hospital in order to maintain a continuity of care and may continue to provide clinical care as long as she is credentialed at Morristown Medical Center.
Do you offer Nitrous Oxide?
Yes! We are excited that Our Birthing Center now has Nitrous Oxide available for our patients to promote comfort and reduce pain throughout labor. Nitrous Oxide is used as an effective form of pain management in many countries with high standards for safe and effective health care, including Australia, Canada, Finland, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. The American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM) maintains that women in the United States should have access to Nitrous Oxide as a form of labor pain management.
Can I choose which birthing room I get to deliver in?
Childbirth is not a scheduled event, so we cannot guarantee you the room you want will be available when you come to give birth. When you are admitted you may choose which of the available rooms you’d like.
How is Newborn Screening done?
There are three different tests which take place. The Metabolic Screening and Pulse Oximetry Screening are done at the 24-48 hour follow up visit with your care provider. The newborn hearing screening is done at your convenience at an outpatient facility. It is recommended that you schedule this test as soon as possible
Will a pediatrician check my newborn?
You will bring your newborn to your pediatrician for his/her first exam. This should be scheduled within 1 week of delivery or as recommended by your provider. Affiliated Pediatricians.
If I want my newborn son to have a circumcision, who would do that?
Circumcisions may be done by a pediatrician, obstetrician, family medicine doctor, surgeon, or urologist. Circumcisions that are performed for religious reasons are sometimes done by others trained in the procedure. Affiliated Providers.
How long will I remain in the birthing center after delivery?
Typical discharge times at Birthing Centers is 4-6 hours after delivery, with the idea that sticking around really isn't necessary — or desirable — if you and your baby are doing well. Actual discharge time will be determined by your care provider based on your individual circumstances. Your care provider will schedule a follow up visit for 24-48 hours after delivery to see how things are going, and for certain required newborn screening tests. And you're always welcome to call them with any questions.
Are meals served at the birthing center?
Meals are not served at Our Birthing Center. A coffee maker, microwave and refrigerator are available for client use in the kitchen area. Snacks and drinks are available in the Lounge. Clients may certainly bring any food/drink they prefer.
Who may accompany me at my birth?
When delivering at Our Birthing Center the client can decide who will be with you or near you as you give birth. The birth center brings generations together to celebrate new life by encouraging grandparents and children to participate in the birth if you so choose. Of course doulas, partners and friends are also welcome.
May I have a waterbirth?
Clients are permitted and encouraged to labor and deliver in the birthing tubs should they so desire as long as they meet eligibility requirements as determined by your care provider based on our policies and procedures. Showers with benches are also available for laboring in.
At what point do I get admitted to the Birthing Center?
Upon your arrival at the birthing center your care provider will determine your labor status by performing a physical assessment. A determination will then be made by your care provider.
- If you are in progressive labor you will be admitted.
- If there is question as to whether or not client is in progressive labor the CNM may require further observation.
- In the case of false labor or early latent phase labor the patient will typically be sent back home.
- If upon examination the client does not meet risk criteria, the patient will be transferred to the hospital with their care provider or collaborative physician management.
Who oversees the Birthing Center?
Our Birthing Center is a professionally run medical facility. We have undergone a rigorous licensing approval process by the New Jersey Department of Health which requires us to meet Standards for Licensing of Ambulatory Care Facilities.
Our Policies and Procedures are based off the standards promoted by the American Association of Birth Centers (AABC), OSHA regulations, CDC Guidelines and HICPAC Guidelines.
What happens with my Placenta?
Patients may elect to take their placentas home with them. If they do not wish to do so, OBC will either dispose of or preserve the placenta for scientific or teaching purposes.
What kind of follow up is done after my discharge?
There is recognition that the postpartum period is a critical time which presents an enormous adjustment task to the new family. Close and frequent follow-up in the early postpartum period will reduce the risk of the development of serious problems for the mother, infant, and family. As such, family will be followed closely postpartum in order to provide support for postpartum adjustments and to identify and resolve any problems. As such, follow-up will be done with phone calls and patient visits with your care providers.
There will be a 24-48 hour visit scheduled with your care provider prior to discharge; A visit to your pediatrician within the first week; And a visit to an audiologist to perform the Newborn Hearing Screening.
How do I obtain a Birth Certificate for my newborn?
Parents will need to complete the Parental Vital Information Worksheet as part of the registration process. Prior to discharge, the nurses will complete the Clinical aspects for the Vital Information Platform (VIP) as mandated by the State of New Jersey. Once all required information has been entered into the VIP system the Birth Certificate will be issued by the local registrar, Morris Township. The birth certificate can be picked up at the Registrar's office, 50 Woodland Avenue, Morristown, NJ. Alternatively, you may complete this form to request it be mailed to you. The office of the registrar can be reached at 973-326-7390.
How do I obtain a Social Security number for my newborn?
One of the questions on the Parental Vital Information Worksheet is whether the parents would like to have a Social Security Number issued for their newborn. This information is entered by our staff into the Vital Information Platform (VIP) system as required by the State of New Jersey. Once VIP is completed the record is sent to the local registrar to process and accept. When the local registrar accepts the record, it triggers the record to be sent from the State to the Social Security Administration for processing. Social Security Cards are usually mailed to the family 2-3 weeks after the record has been accepted by the local registrar.
My I bring a photographer to photograph my birthing experience?
Of course! Just remember that any guests accompanying a patient throughout delivery are under the authority of the birthing center and the midwife attending the delivery. They must comply with any rules and/or instructions of the birthing center and midwife.
American Association of Birth Centers (AABC): Professional association that represents and promotes Birthing Centers
American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM): Professional association that represents midwives
DONA International: Doula Certification
La Leche League International: Breastfeeding support
The Partnership for Maternal & Child Health of Northern NJ: Postpartum support
Additional questions about Our Birthing Center can be directed to info@OurBirthingCenter.com