Rogers-Lowell Area News

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Date ArticleType
4/23/2019 Member News
March of Dimes and Willow Creek Women's Clinic Announce First Joint Supportive Pregnancy Care Program

March of Dimes has announced that Willow Creek Women’s Clinic will be the first Supportive Pregnancy Care (SPC) site in the state of Arkansas, designed to help improve mother and baby health during pregnancy, labor and delivery, and infancy. Willow Creek Women’s Clinic is located at Willow Creek Women’s Hospital, 4301 Greathouse Springs Road in Johnson.

The March of Dimes SPC program offers prenatal care in a group setting with moms-to-be of similar gestational ages. At each group session, women learn to perform their own self-care by measuring and recording their own weight and blood pressure with the help of a facilitator. An obstetrician meets individually with each woman to perform a physical assessment and discuss specific concerns in a private area within the group space. During each SPC visit, women have more time with their health care providers than they would during conventional individual prenatal checkups, and benefit not only from prenatal care education, but also from the vital social and emotional support they receive from other mothers.

The first SPC program will start in June. Interested women – who will be in their first trimester of pregnancy in June – should call (479) 757-1730 for more information or to enroll.

“We are thrilled to be Arkansas’ first site for this innovative program that will benefit both mothers and babies,” said Dr. Serena Pierson, an Obstetrician-Gynecologist speaking on behalf of Willow Creek Women’s Clinic. “The SPC environment can empower women to take control of their pregnancy care and fosters relationships that can last throughout their pregnancies and beyond. National research has shown that a group setting for prenatal care is associated with fewer preterm births, reduced incidence of low-birth-weight infants, and shorter neonatal intensive care stays.”

March of Dimes shares a passion and commitment to improving maternal health and prenatal outcomes, believing that an innovative approach like the SPC program can help play a key role in breaking down some of the barriers these expectant mothers encounter during their pregnancy—hopefully leading to fewer preterm births. Multiple studies have demonstrated that group prenatal care:

• Reduces preterm birth and rapid repeat pregnancy
• Improves psychological outcomes including readiness for labor and delivery
• Increases rates of breastfeeding initiation
• Decreases rates of small-for-gestational age babies
• Reduces health care costs
• Empowers women and increases patient and provider satisfaction with care

“We know that limited access to quality healthcare during pregnancy, exacerbated by racial and ethnic disparities, plays a decisive role in the rising rate of preterm birth in the United States. In fact, women of color are up to 50 percent more likely to deliver prematurely,” said Dr. Sameer Wagle, a Neonatologist and Perinatal Medicine Specialist who serves on the Board for the local March of Dimes chapter and also practices at Willow Creek Women’s Hospital. The program is open to any expecting mother interested in participating, regardless of insurance coverage.

One in 10 babies in the United States is born prematurely (before 37 weeks of pregnancy), meaning that the U.S. has one of the worst preterm birth rates of any high-income country in the world. The 2018 Premature Birth Report Card from March of Dimes, released on November 1, shows that preterm birth rate rose again last year for the third year in a row. Babies who survive an early birth often have lifelong health issues such as learning disabilities, vision and hearing loss. Even infants born just a few weeks early have a greater risk of respiratory distress syndrome (RDS), feeding difficulties, temperature instability, which can increase the risk for hypothermia, jaundice and delayed brain development.

About Willow Creek Women’s Clinic
Established in 2016, Willow Creek Women’s Clinic includes three board-certified obstetrician-gynecologists – Jan Furniss, MD; Alexis McCollum, MD; and Serena Pierson, MD – who provide care for women through all of life’s seasons. The clinic provides complete pregnancy care in a comfortable and caring environment. They offer high-risk pregnancy care, low-intervention birthing options, advanced labor and delivery services and educational resources for new parents. The clinic also offers comprehensive gynecological care for women of all ages – from adolescence through menopause – with a full range of services, from annual pelvic and breast exams to treatment for urinary incontinence and reproductive issues as well as surgical management of gynecological issues, including minimally invasive procedures. More information can be found and appointments requested at www.WillowCreekWomensClinic.com. Their phone number is (479) 757-1730.

About March of Dimes
March of Dimes leads the fight for the health of all moms and babies. They support research, lead programs and provide education and advocacy so that every family can have the best possible start. Building on a successful 80-year legacy of impact and innovation, they stand up for every mom and every baby. Visit MarchofDimes.org or Nacersano.org for more information. This March of Dimes program is supported by AMAG Pharmaceuticals which focuses on bringing innovative products to patients with unmet medical needs. The company does this by leveraging its development and commercial expertise to invest in and grow its pharmaceutical products across a range of therapeutic areas, including women’s health. For additional company information, visit www.amagpharma.com.