Options for Prenatal Care and Delivery
Few times in life are as exciting and full of opportunity as the time when you are expecting a new baby. Choosing a birth setting that fits your values and preferences is an important part of the experience.
Yale Health now offers two choices for care during pregnancy and when the time comes to welcome your new baby into the world.
One option is to receive your care during pregnancy from our team of physicians, nurse practitioners and certified nurse-midwife at Yale Health, with delivery attended by our experienced, board-certified obstetricians at the York Street Campus of Yale-New Haven Hospital.
A second option is for your care during pregnancy and delivery to be provided by the certified nurse-midwives affiliated with the Vidone Birth Center at the Saint Raphael Campus of Yale-New Haven Hospital. The midwives are all affiliated with the Center for Women’s Health and Midwifery (CWHM) or the Yale School of Nursing Midwifery Faculty Practice (YSN) and see patients at 200 Orchard Street, New Haven, CT. This option requires a referral from your Yale Health Ob/Gyn clinician.
In either case, you will receive care during the first three months of your pregnancy at Yale Health. At that time, you will be able to choose one of the options above, assuming you have no complicating medical conditions. If you choose the second option, we will help you arrange for transfer of your prenatal care at a point that makes sense for you. Once you’ve decided where you want to have your baby, it will be best to receive most of your prenatal care at that site.
If you initially choose to transfer your care to CWHM but unexpected complications arise during pregnancy, you may need to be transferred back to Yale Health and plan for delivery at the York Street Campus of Yale-New Haven Hospital.
Regardless of whether you get care at Yale Health or care at CWHM, you should:
- Use Quest Diagnostic Services at any of their locations in New England (Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut and Rhode Island) for all lab services/testing.
- Still use the Yale Health Pharmacy in order to get prescriptions with the standard copay (see Outside Pharmacy use).
- Receive all other medical care (including Acute Care not related to the pregnancy) at Yale Health.
- Share labor and birth preferences with your clinicians. Both obstetricians and midwives always do their best to accommodate these, keeping in mind our shared primary goal of a healthy baby and mother. Preferences may include VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean) and natural childbirth.
Both hospital sites offer:
- Certified Baby-Friendly care
- Hydrotherapy, nitrous oxide and other comfort measures
- Necessary interventions, including cesarean section, epidural or spinal pain relief, and other comfort measures
- The ability to respond immediately to an unexpected emergency or concern about your baby’s health
Things to consider as a Yale Health patient giving birth at Vidone Birth Center at the Saint Raphael Campus of Yale-New Haven Hospital:
- There is always an attending obstetrician present at the Vidone Birth Center in case complications develop in labor or a cesarean section is necessary.
- If you have premature labor under 35 weeks of pregnancy and you are stable, you may be transferred to the Yale Health obstetricians at the York Street Campus (where care for preemies is immediately available).
- You may need to come to Yale Health for scheduled imaging or other tests.
- If your baby needs immediate attention due to an unexpected complication of birth, trained staff are available at both sites to provide emergency care. Pediatric specialists from the York Street Campus can arrive within minutes at the Vidone Birth Center if necessary. If intensive care is needed, your baby can be transported to the York Street Campus Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). You will then be transported to the York Street Campus to be with your baby.
- Yale Health pediatricians see newborns only at the York Street Campus. If you give birth at the Vidone Birth Center, your baby will be cared for by the pediatric staff there until discharge. When you and your baby are discharged, you will be called to schedule newborn appointments at the Yale Health Pediatrics Department.
- You will have an office visit about six weeks after delivery with the clinicians who attended your birth. Any further care, including routine primary care, will be provided by the Yale Health Ob/Gyn Department.
If you would like to request a referral to CWHM please send a MyChart message to one of the Ob/Gyn clinicians you’ve seen recently.