Labor and Delivery Services
Brigham and Women’s/Newton-Wellesley Obstetrics offers parents a supportive environment, superb nursing care and the assurance that a board-certified neonatologist or critical care pediatric specialist is on site around-the-clock.
Board-certified anesthesiologists are also continually available and there is a board-certified obstetrician on the maternity unit 24 hours a day, every day, to provide additional support or consultation with your obstetrician or midwife.
Arriving at the Hospital in Labor: Where to Go
If you arrive between 6:30 am and 8:30 pm, please enter the Hospital using the East or West entrances. Take the West elevators to the 5th floor. There you will find the Reception/Registration area. After registering you will be escorted to the Antenatal Testing and Evaluation Unit (AETU) for evaluation.
If you arrive between 8:30 pm and 6:30 am, please use the Emergency Department entrance where you can register with the Admitting Coordinator. You will then be directed to AETU for evaluation of your labor.
Brigham and Women’s/Newton-Wellesley Obstetrics is in the process of creating an entirely new facility. Phase one, the new labor and delivery unit, is completed. This unit contains our Antenatal Evaluation and Treatment Center in addition to twelve spacious suites with private baths, five of which contain Jacuzzi tubs specially designed to aid in the labor process.
Our labor and delivery suites also include comfortable accommodations for partners as well as state-of-the-art equipment for newborns. These suites are intentionally designed to feel more like home than a hospital. State-of-the-art surgical suites for Caesarean births are also located in the labor and delivery unit.
Antenatal Evaluation and Treatment Center (AETC)
Our Antenatal Evaluation and Treatment Center is the place where maternity patients are referred by their physician or midwife for evaluation and monitoring of pregnancy-related complications from early through late pregnancy. It is staffed by nurse clinicians 24 hours a day, seven-days-a-week, and provides ongoing specialized medical care.
If any concern comes up that requires immediate assessment, your care provider can refer you to the AETC. Women who are scheduled to have a Cesarean birth also come to the AETC for a pre-admission orientation. To ensure optimum safety and quality care, your labor will be evaluated in the AETC when you arrive at the Hospital to give birth before admission to a labor and delivery suite.
Labor and Delivery Suite
Once it is determined that you are in an active labor pattern, you will be taken to a labor and delivery suite. A nurse will be with you throughout labor and delivery, providing support, encouragement, and any information that you need. She will keep your doctor or midwife informed of your progress. Your physician or midwife will also be available to you during your labor and will be with you throughout the delivery process.
Most women find their experience is more comfortable when they have someone close to them by their side. We encourage your partner to stay with you. He or she is welcome to stay overnight in your room if you wish.
The external fetal monitoring evaluation that you receive when you first arrive will be repeated periodically or continually throughout labor. In addition to walking, you may also use the shower, tub, or birthing ball to help you relax. When your labor has progressed and you find that you want pain relief, your obstetrician or nurse midwife will order medication or allow you to begin an epidural if that is your choice.
Throughout your childbirth experience, we will strive to provide you the highest quality care in a comfortable environment that focuses on your special requirements and those of your family, so please keep us informed of your needs.
Managing Your Labor
You should discuss your medical options for pain management with your obstetrician or nurse midwife. You and your caregiver will probably not make the final decision concerning the most appropriate pain relief until you are actually in labor, but it is important to understand your choices in advance.
Alternatives to medications that can help you cope with discomfort during labor include relaxation and breathing, massage, positioning, showers, and use of a Jacuzzi tub or birthing ball. Please note that while patients labor in the tubs, we do not offer water births. Each of these options is available at Brigham and Women’s/Newton-Wellesley Obstetrics. Classes in most of these techniques are available through the Newton-Wellesley Hospital Wellness Center and Childbirth Education program.
There are a variety of options for the medical management of labor pain. Some patients find that an intramuscular injection of narcotic pain medicine is sufficient for pain management. Others choose to have a regional anesthetic (an epidural) that blocks the pain of labor while allowing the mother to feel alert and maintain her ability to move freely in bed.
It is recommended that you discuss the particulars of an epidural with your physician prior to your delivery. If you choose an epidural an anesthesiologist will administer it and will continue to monitor your level of comfort. Your medical condition and that of your baby will also be regularly monitored. The epidural is continued until your baby is born. The day following delivery, an anesthesiologist will visit you to check on your recovery.
Board-certified anesthesiologists are available around-the-clock, so regardless of the time of your labor, you will have access to the full range of anesthesia options.
Photographs and Videotaping
We allow your support person to take pictures, however, we reserve the right to prohibit photography and videotaping at any time a physician, midwife, or nurse believes it creates interference or is inappropriate. We appreciate your cooperation.
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