The Midwife's Place in Bellevue, Nebraska, is the cornhusker state's first freestanding non-hospital birthing center that opened on December 14, 2011. It has offered women a certified nurse midwife 24 hours a day since the center first opened.
Ironically, it had predicted that in its first year of business, it could possibly deliver 20 births --- instead of the 34 babies that was delivered in four months. Also, there is a two to three week waiting period for the initial appointment. Many view The Midwife's Place as an out-of-hospital birthing center, an alternative to home births that are considered illegal in the state. Over 230 birthing centers are available across the country, with The Midwife's Place the first in Nebraska.
Available for the expectant mothers are two bedrooms and birthing suites, with comfortable quilted comforters and plenty of plump pillows for the mother to relax. One of the bedrooms has a four-poster Victorian bed with mahogany or oak dressers and night stands. Birthing stirrups are not available. The father and children can crawl into bed to visit with mom, emotionally supporting her to make the birthing process less stressful.
Little Fiona entered the world with nary a problem. Although the whole thing did leave the little girl quite tuckered and longing for a little sleep. It was a frightfully busy day for a kid only minutes old.
There are no birthing technology or IV machines when the newborn was born, or fetal monitors. But there are safety precautions for mom and newborn, medication for resuscitation and afterward for excessive bleeding.
The strict laws in Nebraska require RNs with training on a master-level, requiring them to be certified nurse practitioners. Required is a written agreement signed with the supervising physician. Prior to the opening of The Midwife Place, no options were available to pregnant women other than going to the hospital because Nebraska law forbids certified nurse midwives from delivering babies in their home. However, many women have already given birth at home, even though it was illegal.
Birthing at The Midwife Place in Bellevue is a low-cost option for low-risk pregnancies, for women desiring natural birth, without drugs or medical intervention. The majority of newborns were born in a comfortable hot tub that was connected to their room, with mothers preferring the comfort of the warm tub during the harsh contractions. The price of $2,000 compares to the $10,000 fee at the hospital delivery fee. Both birthing processes are covered by most insurance policies.