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At PCC, we provide birth centered around you. This means that patients have a variety of birthing options conveniently linked within one health system. We work with a collaborative team of certified nurse-midwives, family medicine physicians, and OB/GYNs to ensure the health and safety of the mother and baby.

For low-risk mothers, we offer midwifery care in hospital and out-of-hospital settings. Midwives perform deliveries at West Suburban Medical Center (Oak Park) and the Birth Center at PCC (Berwyn). Water birth is available in each location.

Any patient may choose physician care if desired. Physicians deliver at Norwegian American Hospital in Chicago, Westlake Hospital in Melrose Park, and West Suburban Medical Center in Oak Park, depending on the health center where they provide prenatal care. PCC’s providers offer patients natural birth options, vaginal deliveries with the assistance of pain medication, and Cesarean sections.

Choosing a Provider: Physicians and Midwives

One of the most important decisions you will make early in your pregnancy is choosing the right provider. Many mothers choose an obstetrician-gynecologist (OB/GYN) or a family medicine physician because they expertly care for mothers and babies before and during delivery. You may choose to work with a doctor who has been your OB/GYN or your family physician for a long time and with whom you have developed a strong relationship. Doctors can help you manage high-risk complications and can assist you with Cesarean births, if necessary.

For low-risk expectant mothers, you have another option: a certified nurse-midwife (CNM). CNMs provide all of your prenatal care. Midwives see birth as a normal process and minimize the use of technological interventions. They can deliver your baby at West Suburban Medical Center or at the Birth Center at PCC. If your pregnancy changes from low to high-risk, your midwife can consult or collaborate with a physician, or transfer your care to the doctor.

If you cannot decide between a doctor and a midwife, you should consider interviewing one of each. Whichever you choose, rest assured that each provider will respect your birth preferences and deliver your baby in a safe environment.

Prenatal Care

A healthy birth begins with care during your entire pregnancy. PCC’s pregnant patients receive prenatal and postpartum care at one of our health centers.

Prenatal Care Schedule (regular visits with your provider):

  • 8 – 28 weeks: every 4 weeks
  • 28 – 36 weeks: every 2 weeks
  • 36+ weeks: every week

Standard prenatal care includes the following screenings and tests:

  • General blood tests to screen for sexually transmitted diseases and other conditions
  • Optional genetic testing
  • 20-week ultrasounds
  • Testing for gestational diabetes
  • Screening for GBS (group beta strep)

 

Birth Center at PCC

Birth naturally in the home-like Birth Center at PCC, located in Berwyn.*Mothers presenting with low risk are eligible to deliver in the birth center with the support of certified nurse-midwives.

  • Attentive care from PCC certified nurse-midwives
  • Choice of water birth
  • Support for medication-free birth
  • Birthing balls
  • Heat packs
  • Support for alternative labor positions
  • Doulas welcome
  • Breakfast in bed
  • Generous visitor policy
  • Home visit by midwife to ensure well-being of mother and baby
  • Free PCC childbirth classes (required)

Please discuss your interest in the birth center with your provider.

*If a patient or her newborn will be better served in the hospital, they will be transferred to a PCC provider at nearby West Suburban Medical Center.

Birthing options at partner hospitals

  • Free PCC childbirth classes
  • Delivery of babies by PCC providers in traditional labor and delivery rooms
  • Physicians and certified-nurse midwives
  • Support for natural births
  • Birthing balls
  • Support for alternative labor positions
  • Doulas welcome
  • Access to pain medication, including epidural and narcotics. Nitrous oxide is available at West Suburban Medical Center.
  • Support for Vaginal Birth After Cesarean (VBAC)
  • Surgical suite for Cesarean births
  • Neonatologists on call 24/7 and Level 2 Special Care Nursery
  • If additional care is needed, infants receive Level 3 care at Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago

Natural births in Alternative Birthing Center available at West Suburban Medical Center

  • Full size beds
  • Delivery tubs for waterbirth 
  • Attendance by certified-nurse midwives
  • Support for Vaginal Birth After Cesarean (VBAC)