Midwives at Magee vs. The Midwife Center (Pittsburgh) - Mothering Forums

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Old 08-29-2008, 06:55 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hello Mamas!

We are trying to decide where to go for prenatal care and want to stick with one caregiver through out our entire pregnancy through birth. Our top two choices at this point are the Midwives at Magee or the The Midwife Center. We've heard great things about both.

What has your experience been with these places?

Is there anything you wish you'd known before deciding to give birth there?

Does anyone know if either is eqipped for a water birth?

Any midwives in particular you'd highly reccomend?

Thanks so much!!

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Old 09-02-2008, 05:05 AM
 
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personally, i love both groups! it really depends on if you want the option to birth in a freestanding birth center or if you'd prefer to birth in the hospital. last i checked (about a year ago) neither group does waterbirths (because of lame rules, not their choice). from the magee group, i adore shannon mccabe she's kind, gentle, and very smart. at the midwife center, nancy is super intellectual but not so warm and fuzzy, i prefer lori and laura. actually, i really like them all, it just depends on which personality you mesh with best. if you're looking for truly personalized care and a natural birth experience, i would probably give higher recommendation to the midwife center because you wouldn't have to worry about extraneous staff being present at your birth and the center is super homey and comfortable.

i hope you have a wonderful pregnancy and birth experience
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Old 09-02-2008, 12:15 PM
 
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I don't know much about the midwives at Magee, but I highly recommend The Midwife Center. My son was born there in May, and I couldn't have asked for a better experience. Throughout my prenatal care I met with all of the midwives at least once, and each one, although very different, has wonderful qualities. They are all very intelligent, and do their jobs well. They require you to take a very active role in your pregnancy and delivery, and allow you to make your own choices along the way, which I think is awesome. I'm not sure about Magee's policies, but what I really loved most about TMC is that after the delivery everyone just left us alone. My husband, son, and I were able to spend time alone in our cozy room getting to know each other. The nurse would check in occasionally to see how everyone was doing, but for the most part, we just enjoyed time by ourselves. No one was coming in to constantly poke and prod my son or I. Also, we were able to go home just 6 hours after the little guy was born, which was great.

Congratulations! I'm sure you'll your make a good choice.
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Old 09-02-2008, 12:33 PM
 
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at the midwife center, nancy is super intellectual but not so warm and fuzzy, i prefer lori and laura. actually, i really like them all, it just depends on which personality you mesh with best.
I felt the same way, and was really disappointed when my labor started and I found out it was Nancy on call that night. I was at the Midwife Center a couple hours before we figured out my son was breech and had to go over to AGH for a c-section. Then it worked out great having Nancy there (not that Laura or Lori wouldn't have been), I'm so glad she was the one there that night. So now I love Nancy too. I like them all a lot. They probably don't like me as much as I like them because I'm the one that ruins their statistics

I'd really recommend the Midwife Center. I'm jealous that now I can never use it, but I will still go to them if I ever am pregnant again. I think they are all great. I really enjoyed going to all my visits there and being able to actually discuss everything with them (it came as such a surprise to me, since I had only been to doctors in my life that always just want me in and out as quick as possible with as little discussion as necessary). I can't think of anything that would have changed my mind if I had known it beforehand. The only thing I wish I had thought about with them was requesting fewer appointments be just with student midwives. Ann had just had her baby so they were short her and I saw the students for most of my visits the lasts few weeks. I'm sure they would accommodate if I had asked to not just be seen by the students (or whatever they are called, sorry), but I never did anything about it then.

Sorry for not organizing my thoughts well. There is too much screaming (teething I think) going on here.

Amy, wife of Ben and mommy of Paul (4/9/07), (7/09) and Charlie (5/13/10)
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Old 09-02-2008, 05:04 PM
 
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I just wanted to add that Nancy was actually my favorite during my pre-natal care, and I so hoped that she would be on call when I went into labor as I really felt like we had connected. The midwife on call happened to be one that I didn't feel such a connection with during my pregnancy, but she was just amazing during the delivery, and now I absolutely adore her. They are all great! I can't wait to do it again!
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Old 09-03-2008, 03:39 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you for your input! It was really helpful. We are certainly leaning towards the center - but are hoping to check out both first.


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last i checked (about a year ago) neither group does waterbirths (because of lame rules, not their choice).
This is SUCH a bummer!!! I really have my heart set on a water birth, but don't feel ready for a home birth especially with the difficulties happening here in PA.

Does anyone know of a midwife that would do a home birth in the area? If that's the only way I could do a water birth, I may look into it!

Thanks again!!

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Old 09-11-2008, 03:08 PM
 
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I was so happy to see this thread. I'm still TTC, but the Magee Midwives are where I think I want to go (I have a UPMC-over-AGH bias, and would rather end up at Magee if I needed hospital care).
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Old 09-12-2008, 02:10 PM
 
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So even though you can have a vaginal breech birth (depending on the presentation)...they won't allow it?

Does the midwife center still have to go by the 24-hour rule once your water breaks? Their 2006 C-sec rate was 16.5% which is so much better than average. Anyone know 2007 rate?

Alicia, wife to an loving and faithful DH, and mama to three fantastic though nutty children (cs, then an HBAC, then a VBAC!!).
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Old 09-12-2008, 03:59 PM
 
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Thank you for your input! It was really helpful. We are certainly leaning towards the center - but are hoping to check out both first.




This is SUCH a bummer!!! I really have my heart set on a water birth, but don't feel ready for a home birth especially with the difficulties happening here in PA.

Does anyone know of a midwife that would do a home birth in the area? If that's the only way I could do a water birth, I may look into it!

Thanks again!!
Just wanted to add, CNM's in PA are completely legal and covered by most major isurances!!!!
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Old 09-16-2008, 11:53 AM
 
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I love the midwives at Magee. But I was high risk both times and needed to be in the hospital. My absolute favorite is Shannon and both my husband and I agreed to request for her to be with us during my repeat c/s with our second child. We also love Tina and Carolyn though you really can't go wrong with any of them.

If you have an uncomplicated pregnancy and want to try water birth, I would go with the Midwife Center. If you have any complications I'd go with Magee (I think a transfer would suck).

Either way, I don't think you can go wrong.

Does Patrick Thorton do home births? Maybe check into him?

Good luck!
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Old 09-22-2008, 01:19 AM
 
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Hi, I'm new here and was doing a google search about the The Midwife Center and this discussion came up. I read that you are interested in a water birth. My sister had her second child as an at home water birth with 2 midwives present (1 a CNM, 1 not). She, at the time, was living in Grove City and had access to a hospital farther north if complications arose but I can find out more if you'd like (her midwife's names, etc). She said her midwife was awesome and when she said "so I'm thinking about an at home water birth" her midwife was like "awesome we can do that." I live much closer to Pittsburgh and am looking to going to the midwife center under my sister's recommendation. My sister is in the medical industry herself and very knowledgeable.

I was present for the birth, in my sister's dining room using her older child's baby pool, and it was awesome. Let me know if you would like any of the info. She also gave me a ton of great books on home births, unassisted births, etc if you would like any books on the subject matter I can tell you them.
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Old 09-24-2008, 12:05 AM
 
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Just bumping up to see if there's more information out there. I'm 8 weeks and leaning toward the Midwife Center. Unfortunately, with UPMC insurance, we'd have to be transferred sans midwives to UPMC if a complication arrives.
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Old 09-24-2008, 08:17 PM
 
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I'm 29 weeks with our first, and we've been going to the midwife center. I've got no complaints whatsoever, they have been wonderful, always answering all of my stupid questions without making me feel stupid for asking them. I've met with all of them except for one so far, and our next appt is with her next week. I've never felt as comfortable in a medical setting as I do there.

The possibility of having to transfer without them does suck, are you sure you couldn't be transferred to AGH with them?

Judy treehugger.gif wife to Brandon 7.15.06 -- Mama to Micah Rowan 12.08.08 -- EBF, babywearing, selective/delayed vax (none so far) -- expecting baby #2 in March 2012 and planning a homebirth!

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Old 09-24-2008, 11:14 PM
 
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Well...technically, I could, but insurance will cover it as an out-of-network expense. So, it's the difference between 20% of the cost of delivery and having it paid in full by insurance. And a hospital delivery with complications is not something I think I could afford, even if it's only 20%. Of course, that's after I pay a deductible. I intend to hire a doula as well, so I feel comfortable being a a hospital if worse comes to worse because I'll still have an advocate with me.
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Old 10-17-2008, 02:36 PM
 
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Well...technically, I could, but insurance will cover it as an out-of-network expense. So, it's the difference between 20% of the cost of delivery and having it paid in full by insurance. And a hospital delivery with complications is not something I think I could afford, even if it's only 20%. Of course, that's after I pay a deductible. I intend to hire a doula as well, so I feel comfortable being a a hospital if worse comes to worse because I'll still have an advocate with me.
There was a woman at our orientation the other week in that situation. It's unfortunate! Here's to hoping that you won't have to transfer .

I'm so excited about The Midwife Center. They have been awesome so far. We heard the heartbeat yesterday

Alicia, wife to an loving and faithful DH, and mama to three fantastic though nutty children (cs, then an HBAC, then a VBAC!!).
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Old 12-09-2008, 01:36 AM
 
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I am joining this discussion very late but I had my son with the midwives at The Midwife Center. I ended up delivering at AGH due to a stalled labor. I had Kathy and she was absolutely wonderful. As a doula I have done a couple of births with the Magee Midwives and I think they are great as well. The births I have done were with Tina everytime and I really like her. Also Patrick Thornton is wonderful. I have not had the opportunity to attend a birth with him but my sister has and she wants to clone him and give him to every pregnant woman. I think that all of them are good but you do have to take into consideration where you will have to transfer to if that becomes necessary. I personally had a great experience at AGH because Kathy and my sister both advocated very well for me. HTH and best of luck.

Amy
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Old 12-13-2008, 12:31 AM
 
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Question about the Midwife Center, I will ask this next week at my next appt. but am curious now:

If your baby is breech at the end of pregnancy, can you go to the midwife center in labor in hopes that the baby will turn during labor, or will they make you go right to AGH for the c-sec?

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Old 12-13-2008, 11:35 AM
 
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I think they would probably have you go to AGH for an external version before labor. AGH's docs actually have a very high success rate with versions. I had a client that was delivering at Jeanette and her baby was breech and they sent her to AGH for her version because they said they had the highest success rates. I am not sure if the version was unsuccessful what they would do. Keep in mind that there are lots of other things you can do to encourage baby to turn and stay turned if it comes down to that.

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Old 12-15-2008, 09:31 AM
 
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If your baby is breech at the end of pregnancy, can you go to the midwife center in labor in hopes that the baby will turn during labor, or will they make you go right to AGH for the c-sec?
This happened to me last time--baby was flipping all over the place and the wouldn't let me come to TMC until I'd been to the hospital for an u/s to check position first. In the end, I had to go to AGH anyway because they felt for liability reasons that they couldn't do the birth at the center--I was past 42 weeks and ds was estimated over 10 lb. They didnt' want to risk a breech birth at the center. The midwives understood my desire for a natural delivery, but the doctors were insisting on c-section for breech. The doctor finally admitted it was about covering her rear and the hospitals liability and I was prepared to squat in the hallway and deliver the baby myself if he was breech and they didn't want the liability. :

Honestly, I looooved the midwives and the prenatal care. They are all awesome. Anne was the one who delivered both my Pittsburgh babies, and she is just so sweet and wonderful. I think she may be on maternity leave now though. I loved the center, the way I was treated, their kindness, and their tolerance for me coming alone pretty much every time with toddlers clinging to my skirts. They were great. The Midwife Center is an awesome place too. Just beautiful, comfortable, family friendly, safe.

Unfortunately I didn't find their backup doctors to be all that great. I had to deal with two different doctors and they were both awful, mean, and both pulled the dead-baby card on me multiple times. Quite honestly I was so mad at those doctors that if they had come into the delivery room while I was giving birth I would have bit their heads off. I felt like they railroaded the midwives and tried to railroad me and I was not happy about that.

I'm curious to hear more about Magee. I'd heard about Patrick Thornton but never considered a male midwife really. I've been wondering though, after the last two experiences, if Magee would be more comfortable for someone who tends to go more than two weeks "overdue", or if they would just be worse.

To be honest, the next baby I might just have an "accidental" unassisted birth.
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Old 12-15-2008, 09:34 AM
 
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AGH's docs actually have a very high success rate with versions
I just noticed this--last year, when we had our situation, I was told that there was only one doctor that did versions, and that he or she (can't remember) was on vacation. The doctor I was dealing with seemed really invested in proving herself right about me needing a c-section no matter what.
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Old 12-15-2008, 01:10 PM
 
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Thanks for sharing. Seemed like from talking to them that they would be ok with 42+ - maybe that is more if baby is head-down and ready to go?

Alicia, wife to an loving and faithful DH, and mama to three fantastic though nutty children (cs, then an HBAC, then a VBAC!!).
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Old 12-18-2008, 08:44 PM
 
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Thanks for sharing. Seemed like from talking to them that they would be ok with 42+ - maybe that is more if baby is head-down and ready to go?
All I know is what happened with me. They started to get nervous at 41 weeks but not pushy. In all honesty I think it's their backup doctors and the review board that is the problem, the midwives are awesome. : And definately the baby flipping around caused some worry.
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Old 01-15-2009, 05:12 PM
 
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I'm curious to hear more about Magee. I'd heard about Patrick Thornton but never considered a male midwife really. I've been wondering though, after the last two experiences, if Magee would be more comfortable for someone who tends to go more than two weeks "overdue", or if they would just be worse.

To be honest, the next baby I might just have an "accidental" unassisted birth.
I ended up pre-eclamptic in and out of Triage with skyrocketing BPs toward the end of my first pregnancy. The OB consult for the MW at Magee started talking induction around 38 weeks. It seemed to me that my MW were receiving some pressure too. But they were great. I agreed to bedrest and I went in every other day (M, W, F) for non-stress tests. If the baby didn't sound good on one they sent me for a biophysical profile. The baby always looked good on them. So long as we both kept looking good on them, my MW kept putting the other docs off. Finally at 41.5 weeks though, my amniotic fluid got dangerously low in comparison to what it was 2 days earlier and we agreed to induction. My son ended up being born at 42 weeks exactly (via c/s) after 60 hours. I did not have any pressure from my MW to induce and never any to do a cesarean. Even at the end when it became emergent and they were rushing me to the OR, my MW was running alongside my gurney, crying and telling me over and over, "There's always VBAC, I'm so sorry." Unfortunately, for me there won't be VBAC since my uterus ruptured, but I feel like my MW championed for me every step of the way.
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Old 01-15-2009, 08:10 PM
 
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Well, I can't add too much. I did go with The Midwife Center in the strip district. And the only problem I had with it was their "we welcome children/siblings" policy, which didn't seem to be the case when my children came. It was suggested to me that I not bring them with me the next time. I felt humiliated.

Didn't really matter in the end, because they decided to drop me as a patient. I've got health issues that could cause complications, making me not as low-risk as they'd like. I don't blame them. They can only go by what the perinatologist recommended. So, now I'm with the Midwives at Magee. I've only had one visit, and liked it enough. Not sure how the birth will go, but I have faith that things will go according to the birth plan in my head (which I really need to get on paper!). And it also looks like my risk factor will go back to low-risk - but we'll know for sure in a week.

Also of note, one of the midwives at the Midwife Center is now working with the Magee Midwives. My only complaint so far with Magee is the hassle and cost of parking. Grrr....
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Old 01-16-2009, 08:10 PM
 
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It was suggested to me that I not bring them with me the next time. I felt humiliated.
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Old 01-23-2009, 12:03 PM
 
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It was suggested to me that I not bring them with me the next time. I felt humiliated.

I'm sorry.

I hope your risk decreases and you are very happy with the MW at Magee. It is a hassle with parking sometimes, but the MW are great.
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Old 01-24-2009, 09:24 PM
 
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I was wondering if anyone knows what level of risk the midwives at Magee are comfortable with. If I get pregnant again, I will be high risk (I have Lupus). I had a horrible experience with ob's and the very thought of going back to obs makes me want to put of pregnancy. Crazy- I know. I'm hoping that the midwives will be able to take me...

Walking the slow & steady path to crunchy with my all granola kiddo and not at all crunchy husband.
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Old 01-25-2009, 12:37 AM
 
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I was wondering if anyone knows what level of risk the midwives at Magee are comfortable with. If I get pregnant again, I will be high risk (I have Lupus). I had a horrible experience with ob's and the very thought of going back to obs makes me want to put of pregnancy. Crazy- I know. I'm hoping that the midwives will be able to take me...
I would call and ask them so you know for future reference. I would think that being at Magee and having Maternal-Fetal Medicine right there they might be more likely to take moms that the Midwife Center couldn't. Let us know what you find out if you call them.

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Old 01-26-2009, 12:15 AM
 
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Amy- I think I am going to call and find out. I know MFM does any c-sections for the Midwives, so that is a really good point. I'll let you know what I find out.

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Old 01-26-2009, 06:38 PM
 
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I was wondering if anyone knows what level of risk the midwives at Magee are comfortable with. If I get pregnant again, I will be high risk (I have Lupus). I had a horrible experience with ob's and the very thought of going back to obs makes me want to put of pregnancy. Crazy- I know. I'm hoping that the midwives will be able to take me...
With my first, I was your run of the mill preeclamptic.

The second time though, I had a history of prior uterine rupture. Definite scheduled cesarean, no question about it. The midwives worked hand in hand with the high risk doc (Robert Kaminski who I also adore) from the start. I never stopped being a patient of the midwives. I was not an MFM patient. I think maybe they had to transfer me the day of my c/s, but I was definitely a patient of the midwives the rest of the time, before and after.

Hope that helps!
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