Prenatal care appointments take place in your home and follow the routine schedule of once-a-month appointments through the first and second trimesters (up to 28 weeks). Appointments are then every two weeks until 36 weeks. Around 36 weeks, there is an appointment to review plans for labor, and document your desires for the birth. After this visit, we meet once-a-week until birth. Appointments are usually 60 minutes, with the exception of the initial visit and the 36 week visit which are 1-1/2 to 2 hours.
Appointments are a combination of discussion and clinical assessment. Answering your questions and addressing your concerns are a priority. Discussions also include education and informed decision-making regarding the normal course of pregnancy, testing and screening, ultrasound, nutrition, childbirth preparation, and prevention of complications. Clinical assessment includes taking vital signs for mother and baby, determining the baby's position and growth, and discussing ultrasound or lab results.
Continuity of Care is an important component of your care. In this way, there is a greater opportunity to develop a relationship of trust and understanding, generate good communication, establish familiarity with your physical health and "synthesize clinical observation, theoretical knowledge, intuitive assessment, and spiritual awareness ... [for] competent decision making."*
Your self-care will be an essential part of your prenatal experience, optimum health, preparation for birth, postpartum recovery and readiness for motherhood. Much of each prenatal appointment is focused on helping you navigate the many challenges and options for taking care of YOU.
Your mate, children, other family, or friends are welcome at prenatal appointments.