FARMINGTON – Expectant moms can now participate in their prenatal care as never before, thanks to group visits supporting pregnancy, a new approach to pregnancy care at Franklin Health Women’s Care. There they meet other expectant moms and have a chance to share stories and have a chance to talk about health issues that are important, including physical and emotional changes of pregnancy.
Participants receive a schedule of all the group times at the beginning of each session. This makes it easy to arrange child care or meet work obligations. Every minute of your time will be occupied, not spent sitting alone in a waiting or examination room.
Participants are in a group with several other women with similar due dates. The groups form around 16 weeks of pregnancy. In each of the sessions, every woman will first have a fully clothed private exam with JennieLea Hanna, CNM, to check vital signs, the fundal height (a measure of the size of the uterus to assess fetal growth and development), and fetal heartbeat. Then those in attendance have refreshments and meet as a group to discuss questions, concerns, and solutions. Each woman is encouraged to bring her partner or another support person.
Hanna, a certified nurse midwife, facilitates the groups along with a Franklin Health Women’s Care office nurse.
Abigail Dimuzio was a participant in the first session and found it to be valuable to be in a group with other expectant parents. “Being with others and hearing their questions and the free flowing conversations they sparked left me feeling really prepared with a good grasp of things to come.”
She also enjoyed being introduced to various community resources that are available to support new families. “I enjoyed listening to the speaker from Maine Families and hearing about the services they offer and how they can help new parents, especially with lactation consulting,” she said.
Individual consultation with your doctor or nurse midwife is always available for a missed a group session or for a medical problem that needs attention.
The next session starts April 2. To learn more call 778-6394.