Friday, September 5, 2008

Showing off the Family Birthing Center

One of my favorite activities is showing off Fauquier Hospital to folks who haven’t visited in a while. It’s always fun to hear them react to all the positive changes that have been put in place over the last few years.

I was able to indulge myself last week, when some friends of mine came up for a private tour of the O’Shaughnessey Birthing Center. They had called to say that their daughter and her husband were having a baby and they wanted to have the opportunity to see the center for themselves. The parents-to-be were enrolled in the hospital’s “Your Childbirth Experience” class already, but were afraid they might give birth before it was time for the regular tour. I was delighted to oblige.

We met for a bite in the Bistro before heading up to the fourth floor. Sarah, who is just beginning to get that “pregnant walk,” enjoyed a cheeseburger and said she was pleased that she and her husband Troy will be eating Bistro cuisine while in the hospital. I told them about the “room service” option that is available for patients and their guests.

The nurses in the Family Birthing Center were happy to make room for our little group and directed me to an empty birthing room, so that Sarah and Troy could take a look around. The couple – and Sarah’s parents – seemed pleasantly surprised to see the home-like, comfortable rooms where they will soon welcome their first child. I showed them how the wooden cabinets open to reveal all the latest in medical equipment, in case it is needed. They were happy to hear that all the birthing rooms are big and roomy, and that each has a window.

We didn’t get to see any babies in the nursery that day. Newborns regularly stay in the rooms with their moms while they are in the hospital, unless they need special nursing attention.

As Sarah and Troy headed to their childbirth class, I asked her parents to make sure to let me know when Sarah gives birth. It’ll give me another excuse to visit the fourth floor.

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