Learn about Cooley Dickinson's affiliated OB/GYN practices here:
Center for Midwifery Care, WomanCare and Hampshire OB/GYN Associates.
Before Baby is Born: The Choices are Yours
You and your partner are the most important members of the Childbirth Center team. We encourage you to take an active role in making decisions about your birth plan and the care of your new baby. Click here to view and download a copy of My Birth Day Wishes, a birth plan document.
During your time with us, we will always respect the choices you make. For example, you are welcome to create the supportive, soothing environment that you may need and that works best for you, including bringing your laptop computer (wireless internet access is available), bringing your favorite music, wearing your own nightgown or pajamas or watching television. You may choose to labor with or without medication.
You can choose to have an obstetrician or a certified nurse midwife assist your birth at the Childbirth Center. Our medical experts have acquired specialized skills and completed advanced training in their field. From the moment you enter the Childbirth Center until you go home, you'll have the comfort of knowing that a coordinated team of dedicated, compassionate professionals is there for you, your baby and your family.
At the Cooley Dickinson Childbirth Center, you and your baby are very important to us. Our dedicated practitioners care about your comfort and well-being. The Childbirth Center offers a bright, spacious and home-like atmosphere as well as technically advanced facilities and equipment.
A tradition of caring, practiced by experienced registered nurses, certified nurse midwives, obsetricians, pediatric hospitalists and other members of your childbirth team, has been associated with Cooley Dickinson Hospital since the hospital's founding. We're proud of the care we've given to many thousands of families during one of life's happiest events, the birth of a child
When you arrive at the Childbirth Center, a nurse will be waiting to welcome you. She will take you and your partner to a private room where you will spend the hours ahead.
Close, Personal Attention
It is our goal to ensure that the nurse who first greeted you will care for you throughout your labor and delivery. We understand that you will appreciate having a consistent presence beside you. When you need encouragement, or if you have questions, your nurse, obstetrician, or certified nurse midwife will be there for you.
Birthing Rooms Designed for Your Comfort
Our birthing rooms are an ideal place to labor and give birth to your baby. Many comforts are provided to help you and your partner or family members labor together in a relaxed, comfortable setting. Each birthing room has a rocking chair, a television, a CD player, refrigerator, and a private bathroom with a hydrotherapy shower. Talk to your provider about water births at the Childbirth Center.
After your baby’s birth, your infant can stay with you. An overhead warmer can be rolled to your bed so that you can hold your baby while both of you are bathed in comforting warmth. Should you require a cesarean birth*, you will remain within the Childbirth Center and your nurse will accompany you to a specialized delivery room for your baby's birth.
Laboring and Delivering in a Water Tub
Before and during birth, some women enjoy the soothing effects of water. For women who want to labor in water, each private labor room features a bathroom with a hydrotherapy shower.
For women who intend to give birth in the water, the Childbirth Center offers access to a water tub. When an expectant mother in active labor enters the water she experiences weightlessness with the hydrostatic pressure supporting her body. The mother can move about freely in the water and can assume any position that she finds comfortable. The heat of the water helps relax the muscles and allows the laboring mother to feel more relaxed and less uncomfortable during her labor. Please speak with your midwife or obstetrician for access to the water tub.
Family and Friends are Important
Our spacious, home-like birthing rooms are designed to accommodate you, your partner or support person, and your baby, as well as grandparents and other family members and friends whom you wish to have with you. The immediate bonding that occurs between these people and your baby is as important to us as it is to you. If you have other children, they are welcome to remain for the birth as long as they are accompanied by an adult, and may hold their new brother or sister soon after the birth.
Tours of the Childbirth Center are given on the first and third Thursdays of each month at 6 p.m. and the second and fourth Sundays of each month at 11 a.m. These tours are free; there is no need to register. Meet us at the stork, located on the second floor, at the entrance to the Childbirth Center.
(Please note: A tour is included in some of our prenatal parent education classes.)
After Baby is Born
After you and your baby have settled, your nurse will take you to your private, home-like room in the Childbirth Center. This is where you will begin getting to know your newborn and will learn how to care for him or her.
Both you and your baby will have the same nurse attending to your needs, a pairing that will help you become well acquainted with your baby from the beginning.
Our nurses are trained in current breastfeeding practices that will help you get off to a good start.
Internationally Board-Certified Lactation Consultants are available seven days a week to offer prenatal and postpartum support.Learn about Breastfeeding Support here.
While in the Childbirth Center, the nurses will teach you the most up-to-date information you need to know for your baby such as the safest sleep positions as well as holding and calming your baby, diapering, dressing, bathing and more.
Cooley Dickinson has in-house, board-certified pediatricians (pediatric hospitalists) available 24 hours a day to care for your baby while you are at the Childbirth Center. All babies are given a thorough medical exam, which includes a hearing screening, jaundice check and newborn metabolic screening.