The birth center that I am receiving care and delivering at is pretty much a one-stop shop! They have their birthing rooms, exam rooms, they provide all maternal and women’s health care, they provide pediatric care with a pediatrician a couple of times a week, they have a chiropractor and a chiropractic room and they even have an ultrasound room with an ultrasound tech who comes in once a week! The birth center also has a doctor on staff who works at the hospital but he reviews all ultrasound images and signs off on them and he also works closely with the midwives to continually make sure that the patients are still able to receive their care at the birth center and to deliver at the birth center. If anything changes during your care or during labor, they notify the doctor and he will determine if it is still a safe option to remain at the birth center.
Anyways, I had my anatomy scan done a couple of weeks ago when I was 19 weeks along. The tech was behind but she still took her time with each patient and went as carefully and precisely as she could. This was opposite from my experience with my older daughter. Her tech was also behind and booked with patients back to back so it felt like she rushed through the anatomy scan – it only ended up taking about 10 minutes. If you don’t know what the anatomy scan is, they are basically looking at and taking pictures of every part of the baby to determine if there are any issues. This typically should take between 45-60 minutes. So it was great that the tech really took her time making sure to get the best images and really checking everything over!
We received a call the next day and the heart images and face images weren’t clear enough so we had to go back the following week at 20 weeks pregnant. I was a little nervous but I kept reminding myself that if they had actually seen anything wrong they would have just sent me to a specialist to get a better look! While we were on the phone, the nurse had told me that they just need to be extra cautious to make sure everything is alright so we know that it is safe to continue care and to deliver at the birth center. This part made my medical freak side happy! I am obsessed with making sure everything is completely fine and then making sure again and again. Having the nurse say they had to be extra cautious made me feel as though they would be more thorough and look closer than a doctor’s office would. [[I have no idea if this is actually true or not, but it made my medical obsessed self feel better 😉 ]]
The second follow up was great and everything turned out fine! Little baby girl is completely healthy and everything is as it should be! Now, my downside with this experience. First of all, when I showed up for the follow up scan I don’t think the tech had read much more than my name on my file. She started out asking us if we wanted to know the gender (which we already had done the previous week) and doing a regular anatomy scan for the first 10 minutes. She was pointing out things in the brain when my husband said something about how we were just there for the heart and the face. She read her clipboard, said something along the lines of “oh, we’re just playing around trying to get her to flip over”, then went straight to getting pictures of the heart and the face.
My second complaint about this anatomy scan experience was that we didn’t really get any pictures… I know that’s not why you’re there, but I know every mama likes pictures to take home! She didn’t print any pictures for us, yet I saw the people who came down right before it was our turn had pictures in their hands… They had the medical assistant of the birth center upload certain pictures that she thought we would want online then sent us a link to download them. However, the pictures she thought we would want were actually pretty terrible pictures. I’m not really sure she knew what she was doing… The tech had gotten some really cute profile shots that I would have loved to have copies of. But we got a bunch of random anatomy pictures and a couple front face shots (and if you’ve ever seen a front face shot of a baby on an ultrasound, they’re pretty terrifying! They look like little skeleton aliens).
All in all, the anatomy scan at the birth center was a good experience! I’m glad they were as thorough as they were and that my only complaints were more superficial things like pictures. 🙂 I am 21 weeks now and won’t have another appointment until I am 24 weeks so in the mean time, enjoy my recipe posts and other random things. 🙂