Last week I visited with the midwives at The Birth Center of St. Pete, a great birth location option for families who are interested in having a low-intervention, unmedicated labor and birth.
They provide prenatal care, childbirth education, and midwifery care at the birth center or in a homebirth setting and lactation support. The midwives also provide homebirth care for some families that are planning to have an out of hospital VBAC (determined on a case by case basis.)
Jessica Willoughby, LM, CPM, founded The Birth Center of St. Pete in 2014 after working as a doula and midwife in the Tampa Bay and Sarasota areas since 2009. She attended and graduated USF with a degree in anthropology and The Florida School of Traditional Midwifery in Gainesville. Her work at a busy birth center in Sarasota inspired her to open one of her own in St. Pete bringing the community personalized and family-centered midwifery services.
The Birth Center of St. Pete has a fantastic team of midwives on board. They are caring and passionate about providing women with options to help them have a positive and safe birth.
From their website:
“The Birth Center of St. Pete is staffed by trained healthcare providers and educators that are committed to improving the health care of the families we serve. Our midwives completed the three year direct-entry midwifery program at The Florida School of Traditional Midwifery and passed the national exam for certified professional midwives through NARM. We believe that for the majority of women, pregnancy and birth are healthy life events that can proceed with little medical intervention. We feel that our role is to educate the client and her family, monitor the pregnancy, birth and postpartum to ensure a healthy, normal progress and recommend appropriate management if there are variations that require advanced midwifery skills or collaboration with other healthcare providers. Our goal is a safe birth and a healthy baby.”
The birth center has two well-appointed labor and delivery rooms and a big birth tub for those who wish to labor or deliver the water. Every Thursday, Joceleyn Pridemore, a local St. Pete IBCLC, visits the birth center's fully equipped lactation space to provide breastfeeding counseling to birth center families in need of support. There is a dedicated play area for children so toddlers and big kids will be entertained while visiting the midwives for prenatal and postpartum care.
Overall the Birth Center of St. Pete is an extremely welcoming and warm environment for expecting families. If you are in the St. Pete or surrounding area and are interested in finding out more, give them a call to schedule a visit!