For many parents, choosing the right hospital for the special day is one of the first exciting steps of parenthood. The Toledo area is home to several wonderful delivery rooms. Here are just a peek at what some local hospitals have to offer.
Mercy St. Charles Hospital
Twelve private birthing suites host Mom and family from labor through delivery and postpartum. A whirlpool is available for pain management during labor, use of a secured refrigerator is available by request, and meals are given on demand through call-in orders. Families receive a blanket, spoon and magnet, as well as a gift basket to new moms from the dietician. The hospital is also home to Level II Neonatal services for high-risk mothers and newborns with special needs. Obstetricians, neonatologists, and anesthesiologists are also available 24 hours a day for specialized care.
With separate units for Labor/Delivery and Postpartum, and over 48 rooms total, the hospital is well equipped to welcome over 4,000 babies (nearly half of all born in Toledo) each year. The Labor/Delivery and Postpartum rooms are private, but some are tight, with limited sleeping space for family (chair recliners) and without a TV. A 24-hour nursery is available although parents are encouraged to keep their baby in their room. The unit keeps quiet from 2-3:30 p.m., when “naptime” promotes privacy and rest for parents. The hospital also has anesthesiologists, neonatalogists and OB providers on staff 24/7 and is home to one of the few Neonatal Intensive Care Units in the area. The Mom & Me Boutique caters to the needs of expectant women, breastfeeding mothers, and new families.
Bay Park Community Hospital
Built in 2001, the hospital boasts several modern amenities. Spacious private rooms (used from labor through the postpartum stage) offer a TV, DVD player, refrigerator and a pullout sofa. Some bathrooms are equipped with jacuzzi tubs and patients may borrow a laptop computer for personal use. Clinical elements are hidden in cupboards to help the rooms feel “warmer.” The unit is also one of few to be managed by midwives. With a goal to “mother the mother,” the staff offers services like postpartum baths, aromatherapy, and massage. All patients receive follow-up calls within 72 hours of leaving the hospital and lactation consultations are available. A spacious waiting room with a TV, reading material and large windows allows guests to feel comfortable as they wait for your new arrival. Once the baby is born, a lullaby plays throughout the hospital.
St. Luke’s Hospital
Eight private birthing suites host moms from labor through postpartum. The rooms are spacious and multicolored (pink, blue, yellow, and light purple), with a TV, pullout sofa and room for family and friends. Moms can enjoy a traditional gourmet dinner with their partner, with menu items like Surf and Turf and Chicken Cordon Bleu. Patients also get regular meals, light snacks and beverages, and may use a shared refrigerator or microwave in the unit. A nursery is available and obstetricians, neonatologists and pediatricians are available 24 hours a day. A large waiting room, with a children’s table is inside the unit. All babies born at St. Luke’s receive a personalized blanket.
Mercy St. Vincent Medical Center
Soon-to-be moms begin in the Labor/Delivery unit. After delivery, moms are moved to the Postpartum unit, slightly smaller, yet private, rooms with a TV and pullout bed. A nursery is available, but parents are encouraged to keep the baby with them. Each room has a simple dry erase board that serves a big purpose. It states, “Very good care = “ for a space for the patient to fill in the blank. Whether it’s keeping the patient informed or letting Dad be around as much as possible, the staff aims to satisfy the patients’ requests. In addition to delivery services for healthy moms and babies, the hospital also has a Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (renovated in 2006), with neonatologists, obstetricians and anesthesiologists in-house 24/7. Scrapbooking sessions are also available for long-term patients. St. Vincent does not allow elective C-sections before 39 weeks of development, reducing the chance of respiratory, temperature control, and other problems. This regulation is consistent with the Ohio Perinatal Quality Collaborative.
The benefits of breastfeeding are monumental for both the child and the mother. This act creates a bond between the two and also helps with child IQ, good cholesterol for brain development and creating a stronger immune system.
Toledo area hospitals
Many hospitals in the Toledo area offer breastfeeding classes and have lactation consultants on hand. Breast pumps are also often available for rental or purchase. While patients may be given first priority at many hospitals, most offer their services to others in the community as well. The Toledo Hospital is home to the Mommy & Me Boutique, which has plenty of resources (from nursing bras to pumps) available. (www.promedica.org)
La leche league
LLL of Northwest Ohio is a nonprofit dedicated to providing women with information and resources about breastfeeding. They also provide mother-to-mother support, monthly meetings, telephone help from accredited leaders and a lending library. (419)251-2120. www.LLLohio.org.
Mothers’ center of greater toledo
Since 1984 Mothers’ Center has been keeping Toledo educated on all the roles of being a mother. From infancy through the teen years, Mothers always know. With multiple meetings each year, a friend with an ear isn’t far away. Come to one of the meetings or special events to learn more. www.motherscenter.net
Get to Class
Having a baby (whether it’s your first or third) means a time of adjustment for everyone in the family. Toledo area hospitals offer a variety of classes to help parents and siblings get ready for the big change. Here are just a few.
ProMedica Health Systems
“We have classes for everyone,” says Monica Taylor RN MED LCCE, Manager of Preparation for Parenthood. “A lot of them are for mothers, but we have a class for just fathers and their babies and also one for siblings.” ProMedica also offers classes in infant safety and CPR as well as breastfeeding. Their “Another TIme Around” class offers a “refresher” course for those who have already given birth.
Mercy Health Partners
Classes at Mercy St. Vincent and Mercy St. Charles are all prenatal classes, taken before delivery. Their most popular class is the Basic Childbirth Preparation Class, a 10-hour course (spanning 5 weeks). Women and their partners learn the basics of delivery and the Lamaze technique. Other classes include Marvelous Multiples, Teen Pregnancy classes, Boot-camp for New Dads, Child Safety and Sibling classies. www.mercyweb.org
St. Luke’s Hospital
The classes at St. Luke’s aim not only to inform expecting mothers but make this time more comfortable. The Childbirth Education class is a 4-week course that talks about the basics of delivery. A Breastfeeding course and Sibling course are also available, however the Sibling course is done on a one-on-one basis, to give the most specific education possible.