The Standard Examiner printed a great article about our Utah Birth Center and we wanted to share it with you! This article will help you understand why there are so many C-Sections happening today and how we feel we can help prevent it from becoming your birthing experience reality.
The birth of her dreams. This is the beautiful experience a mother and her child can have with the assistance of My Family Birth Center in Ogden. The center, which opened in May and is one of eight licensed birth facilities in Utah, offers a range of options for women who want a voice in their maternity care, including home birth, birth at the center and well-woman care.
Loretta Shupe is the owner and founder of My Family Birth Center. A major reason for opening the center was to provide a safe, calm environment where “couples are not confined to the parameters of other facilities,” as stated on the website, “and are free to create their own story as long as safety is met.” Shupe’s other driving influence was to help women avoid Caesarian sections, which carry risk and long-term consequences.
“I felt passionate about trying to make as big an impact as I can because when a woman goes into a hospital in our area, she is one in four likely to have a C-section. On first-time moms, it’s one in three! These women ask, ‘What just happened? I was a low-risk mom. How come the delivery took a turn?’”
Shupe says C-sections were uncommon 30 years ago and reserved for serious complications. Now they are given when labor is induced or prolonged, and sometimes for the physician’s convenience. In the first instance, Pitocin is administered by an IV, but some babies can’t tolerate the drug and in such cases, “something must be done to get the baby out. The best thing to do is to refuse to be induced,” Shupe explains.
In the second case, when labor is slow and the mother is weary, the doctor may offer a tempting option, saying, “We can have that baby out in 15 minutes.”
“What bothers me most,” Shupe says, “is that when a mom gets a C-section, her ability to enjoy her baby is out the window. Now she’s recovering from major surgery. Those scars can be painful for years. I don’t think OBs realize that. They might think they’re doing her a favor by shortening the labor. She’ll deal with the aftermath for months or years.”
Shupe knew before high school that she wanted to be a midwife, and trained extensively toward that end. A nurse for 40 years, she worked in hospitals in labor and delivery, newborn nursery, postpartum and other specialties. In January 2014, she began an apprenticeship to become a Certified Professional Midwife (CPM) and, after participating in over 100 births, received her certification in January 2017.
Including Shupe, the staff consists of two birth assistants, two midwives, a nurse and a nurse practitioner who treats not only well women—helping with infertility, family planning, sexually transmitted infections, and other items—but also can treat men and children. “That makes us a family center,” Shupe says. In the event a mom in labor needs high-tech care for specialized or emergency treatment, the facility is located two blocks from Ogden Regional Medical Center. “If we do need to do a transfer, we can do it quickly.” She notes that fees are about a third of the cost of an OB hospital package (excluding C-section) and that the company takes insurance.
“When a woman comes to our center, we honor her wishes as best we can. She can eat, drink, get up, move around, lie in positions of her choice, have a water birth, invite people in of her choice, bring in music. We work to have a five-star hotel and to give women dignity and respect so they feel like royalty.”