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Hi ladies (and gents, too) -<br><br><br>
New mother-to-be here. I've had some limited experience w/ Atl area hospitals (Piedmont, Southern Regional), both during adult stays. Wondering if anyone has thoughts on maternity/baby and child care/birthing experiences at any Atlanta hospitals. We're due in January, hoping for a homebirth but wanting to research other locales (doesn't that make it sounds more inticing? okay, no. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> ). So, horrible ones? Heavenly ones? Inbetweenies?<br><br>
Thanks!
 

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Hi Emily-I'm not much help on this one, but I do know to avoid Gwinnett Medical Center. I had my first there and hated it. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/angry.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="angry"> It has a lot to do with why I am now "HomeBirthMommy" <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"> . I have heard great things about North GA. Regional in Gainesville, but that's quite a drive. The 2 friends I know that chose that hospital did so b/c of it's overall more natural approach to birth and they were pleased.<br>
Just keep good homebirth vibes going <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up">
 

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I had both of mine at Northside. My experience was fine, but that place is VERY busy, so you hear lots of horror stories.<br><br>
I have heard great stories about NFulton Regional Hospital. they even have birthing tubs there. that's where I will probably go if/when we have another baby.<br><br>
Good luck and happy gestating!!!
 

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I had my daughter at Gwinnett Medical Center and though I did not care for my stay there, I am glad that she was born there. She was 16 weeks premature and they have a wonderful NICU. They encouraged breast feeding, holding and parents taking the lead in their baby's care (once they are healthy enough.) The staff is extremely friendly and helpful. I hope you won't need a NICU, but if so, I give GMC's rave reviews.<br><br>
Thanks,<br>
Michele
 

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Birthed at Piedmont -- it was a wonderful experience. Very supportive & friendly staff. In fact, if you get special permission, you can set up your own birthing tub there (my guy showed up a few weeks early, so that didn't work out for us)<br><br>
Kimba
 

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I had both of my dc at Northside, and loved it! I had wonderful nurses, and room was very nice and clean. At the time I had no clue about birthing centers, or that anyone even had homebirths anymore.
 

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DD was born at Northside.. horrible, awful experience.<br><br>
DS was born at Gwinnett Medical and it was a much, much better experience - I have no regrets about going there, aside from the fact that Josh was a repeat c-section <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/eyesroll.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="roll"> It was scheduled though, and I believed it necessary (they're 16 months apart and I was told it was the best choice for less than 18 months age difference)<br><br>
We're TTC now and the next one will be delivered at N. Fulton.
 

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Congratulations on your upcoming birth!<br><br>
I recently attended a wonderful HypnoBirthing birth at Gwinnett Medical Center! It was a positive, unmedicated birth experience. Mom was not pressured to have medical intervention. Her wishes to use the HypnoBirthing Childbirth Method was respected.<br><br>
I have also heard many good things about N. Fulton Regional.
 

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My take on it....<br><br>
Northside- baby factory, if your choosing this hospital, do not expect 1 on 1 care, they are very busy. There are some wonderful nurses, but just like anywhere else, you'll run in to a witch or two. NICU and regular nursery.<br><br>
Kennestone- less busy, but also fewer rooms. There are labor tubs, but no waterbirth option. Again, nurses run both ways. Has a NICU, but no 'normal' nursery.<br><br>
N. Fulton- Small hospital- not sure on the nursery status. Midwife practice. Margret Strickhauser, her partner Ann, they do waterbirthing.<br><br>
S. Fulton, don't recommend it<br><br>
Atlanta Medical Center, don't recommend it<br><br>
Cartersville Medical Center, probably too far away, but I have not yet had experience there.<br><br><br>
With any hospital birth, I encourage you to find a doula who can attend your birth. She will help you with the 1 on 1 care, no matter which hospital you chose. Good luck.
 

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Avoid Emory Eastside (Gwinnett County)! The labor nurses were a mixed bag--one evil, one really sweet. The post-partum nurses were across the board uneducated and harsh. I wound up with a c/s and they treated me like a crack addict when I asked for something stronger than Motrin afterwards. The pediatric docs are cold and awful. They are completely ignorant about breastfeeding (even the lactation consultant) and told me basically not to even bother trying to BF my DD. She was a huge baby (just over 10 lbs); she lost 9 oz the next day (10% is normal) and they tried to force me to feed her formula--threatened to make me sign her out of the hospital AMA if I wouldn't give her any. She was not dehydrated, no low blood sugar, no medical reasons for the formula whatsoever, so DH and I (both attorneys <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/bag.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Bag">: ) started asking people how to spell their first and last names and asked for their policies in writing and they backed off. Thankfully I was committed to breastfeeding and hired a private LC and we're still happily nursing. I shudder to think what happens to less stubborn mamas.<br><br>
They are building a completely new maternity wing in the addition to the hospital, so I don't know if it will have tubs, etc. that the current ones does not. Maybe it will come with all new staff as well?<br><br>
On the upside, they have some darn tasty chocolate cake...
 

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I just moved here and actually called a few different hospitals before deciding on North Fulton Regional. My deal-breaker was the c-section rate and North Fulton's was arounf 12%, which was a relief. When I came here, I was referred to an OB that delivered at Northside, and then at my first appt. I found out their c-section rate was 30-35%! Can you imagine...one in three births end in a c-section at Northside?! I flipped out when I heard that, did some crying and then set about finding a mid-wife, and a new hospital. I talked to doulas, birthing instructors and of course, the actual person who answers the phone at a few hospitals before I felt comfortable. But pretty much everyone I talked to from the natural childbirth camp reccomended North Fulton. Of course, none of this has been tested b/c I am not due until 9/23...but I feel like I at least have a good chance of avoiding the un-neccessary c-section and/or various interventions. Good luck!
 

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I have a friend planning a VBAC in December with Margaret Strickhauser at North Fulton. She seems very pleased so far.<br><br>
I am having my second home waterbirth with an "off the radar" midwife in December.<br><br>
I have had 3 in hospitals. One in Atlanta Medical Center back when it was still GA Baptist (AWFUL doctor. NEVER EVER go to Peter J. Ulbrich. The man is a misogynistic, condescending BASTARD with a God-complex. I am not the only woman whose birth he has stolen).<br><br>
Two I had at Southern Regional, just before they opened their new and "improved" women's center. Can't say I recommend them. My sister had her baby there (in the new part), and it was 5 HOURS after she gave birth with episiotomy, and they STILL had not gotten her any ice packs. She hadn't eaten almost all day, and is allergic to wheat. They brought her LASAGNE and GARLIC BREAD, and when she asked for something else they said "The cafeteria is closed now, have your family go out and buy you something" and for this you pay $1,000+ a night? No thanks. Sure it looks all gussied up with fancy tile floors and pictures on the walls, and they do have an NICU, but for low-risk situations, you're better off elsewhere IMO.<br><br>
Kathryn
 

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One reason we could never make the leap to home birth is that we had good experiences with hospitals. I had my first at Dekalb Medical Center. We had an LDRP room, which was great, and the nurses were wonderful. (This was way back in '94, though, and they didn't have LDRP at Dekalb last time I checked.) I had my other two at Northside. I was prepared to hate Northside because of the "baby factory" reputation and high epidural rate. (I did not have meds with any of my deliveries.) The nurses at Northside could not have been more supportive, and respected my desire to go drug-free. (I also had a great midwife with each of my three births!)<br><br>
I toured N. Fulton and ultimately decided against it (though I really liked Margaret Strickhouser) partly because it was farther away and because it *smelled* like a hospital. (Weird reason, I know!)
 

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I delivered at Piedmont 6 years ago... GREAT experience. Had a doula, wonderful nurse, patient OB (pushed for 2 hours). Only intervention was a hep lock (I had strep B and had to get 2 doses of antibiotics). The nurses were very impressed that I handled my drug-free labor so well and were very supportive.<br><br>
This time I decided not to use Piedmont, though, because I'm having twins and my old OB practice isn't keen on breech deliveries of Baby B; they have a policy to go straight to CS. The only group with midwives there IMO had too many docs/midwives, and I found a group on the south side (closer to me) that had only 2 docs and 1 midwife. They deliver at Southern Regional. I couldn't believe it costs twice as much as Piedmont!!! Downsides I've seen so far (babies due in 7 weeks) are that there are NO TUBS in the L/D rooms (just shower with chair), and the rooms seemed much smaller to me than Piedmont (though one doc said there are two size rooms at Piedmont and I probably ended up in a bigger one). Since my water broke first with Nicolas, I figured the tub issue isn't going to matter anyway. Also with twins, it seems everyone makes you go into the OR to push, even with vaginal. Which means only one support person (scrubbed up in blue hat and shoe covers, you know), no video, etc. YUCK. But I've been talking much sense and statistics to my OB and last week he agreed that if all is going fine, I should be able to stay in my L/D room to push. Yay!<br><br>
So I'll let you know how it goes there. But for regular birth (not twins, etc.) I'd probably suggest Piedmont at this point. My postpartum experience was good, also, and there was no problem with dh or I accompanying baby to nursery at first for bath, then rooming in the rest of the time.
 

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Just wanted to say that I birthed both dc at Northside and loved it. I did not get the feeling that it was a baby factory and had wonderful nurses. With both births I had a LC visit me within 24 hours. I would birth there again.
 

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I delivered my first at Dekalb and aside from having an OB practice that wasn't good at communicating, the hospital was nice. Their LDR rooms were very nice and the P rooms weren't too bad either. My nurses were all very nice and they were wise enough to bring in an LC early on before I even realized I was having problems. They were awesome about making sure meals were on time and always brought by plenty of snacks and hydration for the BF moms, it was a pleasant experience. They were very pro-BF and had a wonderful group that met there weekly with an LC and it was free and very helpful.<br><br>
I delivered my second at Northside and it was a zoo. There were so many babies and the nurses were stretched thin. I had to call a few times because they missed my meals. They knew I had BF my first, was actually still nursing him, so they didn't call an LC, although they offered one if I wanted. They did however try to force formula on me when I left. I explained to the nurse that I was certain I wouldn't have any problems and to save it for someone else and she about freaked; I think she was from another part of the hospital though because she didn't seem to know much about the maternity ward.<br><br>
I'd highly recommend Dekalb, I think they were working on bringing back their LDRP rooms shortly after I delivered there 5 years ago.<br><br>
Northside is sufficient but you really can fall through the cracks there.<br><br>
I've heard good things about Piedmont and not much good about Gwinnett. I suspect a lot of it has to do with your OB interaction as well, sometimes it can leave a really bitter feeling, regardless of the hospital service.
 

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I have a friend who <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love"> Crawford Long. She also used a Family Practice physician to attend her birth, so that might have something to do with it, too.<br><br>
Hope you get the birth you want!!!<br><br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up">
 

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I birthed by first son (8-10-2001) at Piedmont. HATED IT. If you want to breastfeed, stear clear. No lactation consultations, hardly, on the weekends. They leave at noon on Saturday and the nursing staff is all too quick to offer formula. I did not breastfeed my first because he would not latch on so the nurse told me he was hungry and I had to feed him. I get angry now just thinking about it. The L&D rooms are nice but the post partum rooms are for the birds.<br><br>
I went to Kennestone for my second son (5-4-04). What a nice change! The nursing staff really worked with me on breastfeeding and didn't freak me out when he hadn't eaten. I really enjoyed Kennestone.<br><br>
HTH!
 

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Not sure if this is too late, but wanted to put in my thoughts...I had my 1st at home, and will have my 2nd here (due tomorrow!), so no personal experience, but a friend of mine had a really great experience at N. Fulton. I've heard that it is the equivalent of Atlanta's birth center (since there's not one!) and that Margaret is great! They encourage breastfeeding and the rooms are large and homey. It is very quiet and small w/ only 5 rooms on the ward, of which only a couple are in use at a time, according to the nurses there. If I were to birth in a hospital, that's where I'd go.<br><br>
I've also heard good things about Piedmont.<br><br>
Of course, there are tons of great lay midwives here too.<br><br>
Good luck w/ your decision..<br>
MEg
 
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