Best Practices—Midwifery Model

Care for Her Delivers!

MCHC has championed innovative birth options that are rare in small, rural hospitals like ours; we offer families laboring tubs and nitrous oxide for pain relief.

Recently, the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) recognized our midwifery-based model as a national best practice. In collaboration with a supervising physician, our midwives monitor a mother through every stage of her pregnancy, tracking fetal development, providing education and supporting a woman during delivery and after her baby arrives.

Because research has shown that births by cesarean section result in higher postpartum infection rates and longer recovery periods for mothers, our Care for Her team is strongly committed to vaginal births. Nationally, the primary C-section rate is 22%; at Care for Her, it is 12%.

We achieved these results because of our unique approach to delivery support: laboring tubs, innovative pain control that includes nitrous oxide, and the one-on-one attention of our providers who support women in giving birth naturally. We’re grateful to our local hospital, Adventist Health Ukiah Valley (AHUV), because without their support, we could not achieve this success. In 2015, AHUV was acknowledged for having the lowest rate of C-section births in the North Bay Area. In 2016, Care for Her delivered approximately 85% of the babies born at AHUV.

Care for Her has also made a strong commitment to performing vaginal births after a cesarean section (VBAC) in appropriately counseled patients. Although supported by the American College of Ob/Gyn, many hospitals in the U.S. do not allow this. We think it is worth the effort, and our practice has an 85% success rate of which we are proud.

Recognition by experts is satisfying, but we know that it is strong relationships with our patients that make this success possible.