There’s often nothing more reassuring than the calming voice and skilled hands of a Birth Companion at the side of an expectant mother when she goes into labor.
Birth Companions is a unique experience available to expectant mothers and their families who will be delivering at Sarah Bush Lincoln’s Women and Children’s Center. It is a collaborative effort between Lakeview College of Nursing and Sarah Bush Lincoln.
A Birth Companion is a specially trained bachelor of science in nursing student from Lakeview College of Nursing who acts as a professional labor assistant to the laboring mother. The Birth Companion meets with the mother several times prior to labor and birth so the mother and her family has a chance to get acquainted. At the time of labor, the Birth Companion attends the labor and birth as a comfort and support person. The Birth Companion does not take the place of the expectant mother’s significant other or husband, but may serve as a “coach for the coach” if desired by the mother and birth partner.
The Birth Companion helps the mother cope with labor pain, reminds her of the breathing techniques she learned in childbirth classes, and assists the mother’s birth partner in providing a variety of comfort measures. A mother who has a Birth Companion may still decide to use pain medication, including an epidural, to help cope with labor. The mother, along with her delivering physician, make childbirth and medication choices.
The service is free of charge, but space is limited and pre-registration is required. If you are interested in reserving a Birth Companion, please call Perinatal Education Coordinator Pam Hood, RN, at (217) 258-BABY (2229) or page her at 1-800-702-0376.