CenteringPregnancy® is a model of group prenatal care. Women are grouped together by due date month and will receive care together though their pregnancies. Each session will include individual assessments such as weight, blood pressure, and belly checks and the rest of the time is spent in a midwife-facilitated group discussing educational content. Women can learn from other’s questions and experiences and develop relationships with each other that can last beyond the pregnancy. The program provides many benefits.
- No waiting room time
- Increased time spent with your provider
- A support network of other women with similar due dates
- Improved pregnancy outcomes
- Decreased incidence of preterm delivery
- Decreased incidence of postpartum depression
- Increased breastfeeding success
- Greater overall patient satisfaction
For additional information visit The Centering Healthcare Institute
What can I expect?
Each group is made up of up to 12 women/couples due to deliver within the same month. There are 10 session, each 2 hours long. Meeting times are known in advance and we will provide you will a letter to present to your employer to request the time off work. Approximately 30 minutes will be spent checking your own weight and BP, belly checks and fetal heart tone checks with the midwife, and social time with snacks. The rest of the time will be spent in a group setting discussing what is important to you. Topics include:
- Childbirth preparation
- Normal pregnancy changes and common discomforts
- Infant feeding
- Infant care
Does CenteringPregnancy® cost any additional money?
No. Centering groups are billed the same as traditional one-on-one prenatal visits so your coverage will be the same as if you were having traditional care. The only additional cost to you is a nominal cost to for the Centering materials.
How often do the Centering groups meet?
The schedule for Centering groups is the same as individual care. We will meet monthly for the first 4 groups and then every 2 weeks for a total of ten groups. Occasionally we have to alter the time interval due to holidays. After 36 weeks you will be seen weekly so every other week will be an individual appointment. We will meet once more for a reunion once everyone has delivered.
Will I meet all the midwives if I do Centering?
Maybe not. We strive to have the same midwife and staff facilitator at all 10 group meetings. Occasionally that is not possible due to illness, vacation, or continuing education so you may have a substitute. You will have the opportunity to meet different midwives at your initial OB appointment, if you are having any problems between groups or cannot attend a scheduled Centering group, and when you start being seen weekly at the end of your pregnancy.
However, even with individual care it is sometimes difficult to meet all the providers. We try our best to make you feel comfortable and typically we bond very quickly over your labor and the excitement of your birth.
What if I cannot attend all the scheduled Centering group?
You will make an appointment for a traditional one-on-one visit that will take the place of the group you will miss. If you know that you will have to miss several groups, it might make more sense for you to have traditional care.
What if I have a problem between scheduled groups?
We are happy to see you for an individual problem visit if needed between Centering groups.
Can I bring my other children to the Centering groups?
No. Childcare is not provided so no children under 13 are to attend Centering groups. We will provide you with the dates of all 10 of your scheduled groups so you can arrange childcare if you wish to participate in Centering.
Can my partner attend Centering groups?
Absolutely! Due to space we ask that you only bring one person and we encourage you to bring the same person to each group if possible. If they cannot stay for the entire time, they can come for the beginning to hear the baby’s heartbeat and ask the midwife questions.
What if I’m still undecided about Centering?
Please call our office (919-678-6900) and ask for more information about Centering and someone will contact you by phone to discuss your questions. You could also commit to attending the first two groups and then decide….you will probably want to stay!