Midwifery Group Prenatal Care Option

Group Prenatal Care combines your prenatal care with a discussion and support group.

Join us for wonderful and unique prenatal care visits with other women who share similar due dates. Group prenatal care is used in many settings across the United States. Surveys have found a 96 percent satisfaction rate among women who participated in Centering Pregnancy care.

We love group prenatal care because it means we have the opportunity to spend more time getting to know you before your birth. Many pregnant women enjoy sharing their experiences and ideas with others who are pregnant. We based our format for Group Prenatal Care on the Centering Pregnancy™ model and then adapted it to fit well with our patients.

Why a group prenatal care option?

Our nurse-midwives believe that Group Prenatal Care allows our patients to:

  • Gain power and confidence throughout pregnancy.
  • Receive in-depth health education (beyond what is possible in a traditional model of care).
  • Strengthen their community networks during their transition to motherhood.
  • Be more knowledgeable as health care consumers.

Women who have participated in group prenatal care have been found to have:

  • Higher levels of satisfaction with prenatal care.
  • Lower numbers of inductions and medication use in labor.
  • Higher levels of pregnancy knowledge.
  • Fewer emergency room visits during the pregnancy.

Here’s how it works

During your first visit, the nurse reviews your history and get you lab tests or ultrasounds as needed.

At the next appointment, you’ll meet with the nurse-midwife for 40 minutes. You’ll have a physical exam and discuss any specific concerns you may have.

Group prenatal care begins at about 18-24 weeks. You and 8-10 other women, all due around the same time, will arrive at our clinic. After checking in at the front desk, you’ll go to a meeting room immediately (no waiting for your appointment!).

When you arrive, a nurse will greet you. There will be time to weigh yourself and take your blood pressure. You’ll have time to socialize with the other women and read about various health topics.

The midwife will measure your abdomen and listen to the baby’s heartbeat in a semi-private corner of the room. Any personal concerns you may have can be discussed at this time.

Once everyone is assembled, the group session will begin. The nurse-midwife and nurse will sit with you and guide a conversation on a variety of topics about pregnancy, labor, birth and parenting. The session lasts about an hour.

Your entire visit will last two hours. The schedule of the visits is arranged before the first class. So, you’ll have all of your prenatal visits booked from the start.

In general, your group will meet every month for a few months and then every two weeks until the end of your pregnancy. Your midwife, nurse and group of women will be the same throughout your pregnancy. Some groups of women choose to continue to get meet on their own after the babies are born.

Frequently asked questions

Do women feel uncomfortable being examined in the same room as the group meeting?

Once women see that we provide a separate space in the corner that is mostly screened off, their concerns about this lessen. Because each woman values her own time with the midwife, other women respect your individual time with the midwife. They are busy weighing themselves, looking over resource information, preparing for the group session and checking in with each other.

What if I need a private exam?

You and the midwife will discuss this while she measures you., If needed, you can be examined in a private room after class.

Can my partner come to the sessions?

We welcome your partner at these sessions. He or she will be asked to sign a confidentiality statement also. If you choose to bring someone, we ask that you try to bring the same person each time. Children are not included in these sessions for reasons of privacy and disruption.

How will you bill me for this?

This falls under routine prenatal care, so there will be no difference in how you are billed for group care.

I understand that the same midwife and nurse work with the group each session. How will I meet the other midwives?

At various sessions, guest midwives from our practice may join us.