Centering is a unique style of prenatal care in a group setting. Its aim is to build a community that empowers pregnant people to be actively involved in their own care.
Pregnant moms meet for 10 sessions with a Centering clinician (doctor, nurse-mid-wife or nurse-practitioner) and a group of up to 10 other pregnant women that are due around the same time.
At each prenatal visit parents have one-on-one time with their Centering clinician to have their baby checked and to talk about any private concerns. The remaining time is used to talk about pregnancy issues that are relevant to the group such as, nutrition, exercise, signs of labor, breastfeeding and after delivery care.
Yes! You will still receive the same prenatal care in your Centering that you would receive at traditional prenatal care visits.
We welcome your support person. They will fully participate in group activities and discussions and often bond with other support people. However, having your support person with you is optional.
Centering group visits offer unhurried time with your clinician. Centering clinicians and patients spend about 20 hours together in group visits. This is about ten times more time than with traditional visits.
Because you know the dates and times for all your visits at the beginning of your pregnancy it is easier to plan around work and arrange childcare. Group sessions occur every month in the beginning of your pregnancy and then twice a month closer to your due date.
Most patients who have participated in this type of care tell us how supportive and reassuring it is to connect with other women going through the same experiences of pregnancy. You have a chance to get to know other moms and perhaps develop a set of lifelong friends. Many times, another mom has the same question that you were wondering about! Studies also have shown that participants in pregnancy centering have lower rates of preterm labor and preeclampsia.
The Centering session begins with the usual elements of prenatal care: checking your vitals and a one-on-one wellness assessment by the Centering clinician. Before the group sits down together, participants may request to discuss a certain topic, enjoy snacks and talk with the other members. During the rest of the session the group shares experiences, talks about topics of interest during pregnancy that develop such as normal symptoms of pregnancy, infant care, and delivery concerns. Groups are lively, interactive, focused on issues important to you and are fun!
There is no extra charge to you for Centering Pregnancy. Your cost share is the same as if you had traditional care and is determined by your insurance benefits.
We are committed to protecting your privacy and we take that responsibility seriously. All participants, including support people, are required to sign a confidentiality agreement at the first group visit. No one is ever pressured to disclose private concerns and your providers will not share any of your private information with the group.
Your wellness check with your Centering provider will take place in a comfortable space in the Centering room. If a private exam is needed, your Centering provider will take you to a private exam room.
Because we want to focus on you and the other group members, we ask that children not accompany their parents to the group. We hope that knowing the date and time of your visits in advance will help you make child care arrangements.
Groups are offered here at Laurel OB-GYN. We will meet in the lobby. Class will be offered on Wednesdays from 3:00 – 5:00pm.
Please send us a message through the patient portal or give the office a call 828-253-5381 so we can help answer any remaining questions you may have.
Please call the office and let them know you would like to be a part of a Centering group. We will get your name on the list and will be in touch!