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The Birth Center Choice will Remain Available for Pregnant WomenAugust 28, 2014

Taos Health Systems and the Northern New Mexico Birth Center (NNMBC) are pleased to announce pregnant women will continue to have the option of delivering their babies at the birth center.


The plan is to move Women’s Health Institute into the Birth Center to allow the Certified Nurse Midwives the ability to deliver in the birthing rooms.


The Midwives and Board of NNMBC and have been dreaming and envisioning a future for the Birth Center that includes CNMs with a viable business model for years. As a result of multiple productive brainstorming sessions between Taos Health Systems and the Northern New Mexico Birth Center it has been decided that Women’s Health Institute will be moving their clinic into the former NNMBC building and beginning a Birth Center accredited by Commission for Accreditation of Birth Centers (CABC). This ensures that The Women’s Health Institute Birth Center will uphold the nationally recognized Midwives Model of Care for freestanding birth centers.


“We are deeply grateful to the care providers of WHI, administration and Board of Taos Health Systems,” said Kiersten Figurski, LM, CPM, Joan Norris, LM, CPM, and the NNMBC Board of Directors, “for ensuring the continued option of Birth Center birth for the families in Northern New Mexico. This is history in the making!”


“We’re really excited about this decision because it means women still have options to deliver at the Birth Center. We have two Certified Nurse Midwives already offering holistic approaches to birthing mothers, at Women’s Health Institute,” says Michael Bone, Executive Director of the Taos Health Systems Practices. “They currently deliver at the hospital’s birthing suites; however, now they can deliver at the Birth Center. It would also allow the CNMs to incorporate more integrated and complimentary therapies into the pregnancy and birth.”


Choosing the right provider to deliver babies depends on a number of factors, including what kind of experience wanted, where to give birth, whether the pregnancy is normal or high risk, and what insurances will pay for.


The American Association of Birth Centers defines a birth center as “a homelike facility, existing within a healthcare system with a program of care designed in the wellness model of pregnancy and birth. Birth centers are guided by principles of prevention, sensitivity, safety, appropriate medical intervention, and cost effectiveness. Birth centers provide family-centered care for healthy women before, during and after normal pregnancy, labor and birth.”

Certified Nurse Midwives (CNMs) are advanced-practice registered nurses who provide counseling and care during pre-conception, pregnancy, childbirth and the postpartum period. They’re holistic practitioners who can offer a variety of options and seeks to eliminate or minimize unnecessary interventions. They are a vital part of the health care team at Women’s Health Institute and work closely with the OB/GYNs.


In addition to the care they give patients before, during, and after pregnancy and childbirth, CNMs provide routine gynecological services – including reproductive health visits, regular gynecologic care (i.e., annual exams) and peri-/post-menopausal care.