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Article Type: Blog

As You Make Prenatal Care a Priority, We’ll Protect and Keep You Safe

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Now that we’re slowly getting back to normal, you can breathe a little easier and get back to focusing on health care for your top priority: your growing baby. 

If you were hesitant to schedule a prenatal appointment, or are putting one off due to safety concerns, we understand. But with the peak behind us, it’s time to look ahead and get back on track with your prenatal care. Nothing is more important to us than you and your baby’s health. 

Rest assured that to keep you safe, we’re employing extra safety measures at our facilities by heeding the latest guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). And in some cases, you may still be able to substitute an in-person visit by talking with your physician by phone or through an online video visit. During in-person care, your OB-GYN will be alert in screening you for symptoms of COVID-19 during your prenatal visits, and protecting you while you're in the office.

Give Your Baby the Best Start 

No matter what’s going on in the world around us, prenatal care helps keep you safe and gives your baby a healthy start. Babies of mothers who do not get prenatal care are three times more likely to be born underweight than babies born to mothers who do get care.  

By checking in regularly with your OB/GYN, potential problems can be prevented or treated. This is why it’s so important to get back on track with your prenatal care as soon as possible. 

When to Have Prenatal Checkups 

You and your physician can decide on the right timing for you, but a typical prenatal checkup schedule likely looks like this:  

  1. Once a month during weeks four to 28  

  2. Twice a month during weeks 28 to 36 

  3. Every week during weeks 36 to delivery 

Women with high-risk pregnancies typically see their physicians more often, however. 

Depending on your needs, your prenatal care may now include new alternatives to decrease the number of in-person visits. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) suggests these ideas for different ways to get the care you need: 

  • Combined care — such as vaccinations and glucose screenings done at the same time —to reduce the number of in-person visits needed 

  • Spaced-out appointments to limit the number of people in the office at one time 

  • Use of at-home equipment (for example, to measure blood pressure and weight) 

  • Video visits 

For First-Time Parents: Take Baby Steps 

From diapering to safe sleep, there’s already a lot to consider as a first-time parent. We have lots of resources to help answer your questions at every stage of your baby’s development, starting with prenatal care. We’re focused on keeping you and your family safe, and we’ll be with you every step of the way as you venture into the exciting new world of parenthood. 

The ABCs of Connecting to Care 

Every pregnancy is different. Whether this is your first or you’re welcoming another child to your family, you’ll likely have questions along the way. Staying in touch with your care team is critical to help you safely manage your pregnancy. 

At AdventHealth, we’re here to offer you safe, trusted care, both in person and virtually. Depending on your specific needs, you can easily talk with your provider through a video visit at home about the care you need. You may even be able to have a video visit for certain care needs. 

During a video visit, you and your provider can decide together when it’s best for you to come in for care. Your doctor can give you guidance on any concerns you have about your prenatal care schedule, such as when you may need:  

  • Blood and urine tests to identify conditions that can affect your health and your baby 

  • Education and information about physical activity, healthy eating, labor and delivery, breastfeeding, postpartum care and more  

  • Pelvic and cervical exams, including a Pap test 

  • Preventive care like gestational diabetes screening and vaccines 

  • Ultrasound exams 

We’re Taking Extra Steps to Keep You Safe 

When you do need to see your physician in person for prenatal care, you’ll notice new measures in place to keep you safe. 

Checking in for Appointments Remotely 

Some of our locations may allow you to check in from your car. You can then wait there for a text from our staff when they are ready to see you. 

Designated Care Areas for Sick and Healthy Patients 

We are careful to safely separate patients diagnosed with COVID-19 — and others who have coronavirus symptoms — from other patients and visitors. 

Cleaning and Disinfecting Often 

All exam rooms, waiting rooms, equipment, screens and high-touch areas are cleaned and disinfected often. 

Limiting Visitors 

At most AdventHealth facilities, visitors are only allowed in one at a time, as long as they are wearing masks. 

Masks for Everyone 

All of our team members, patients and guests are required to wear masks. If you don’t have one, we will provide one for you. 

Safety Measures in Waiting Areas 

Clear protective shields between staff and patients have been installed in all our registration areas. We also have floor markers and seat covers for where to stand and sit, which helps keep people 6 feet apart for safe social distancing.  

Taking Temperatures at All Facility Entrances 

Most people who have symptoms of COVID-19 develop a fever, according to the CDC. That’s why we take the temperature of everyone who enters our facilities.  

Protecting Yourself and Your Bundle of Joy 

To ensure a safe visit and give you peace of mind, try not to touch your face, and wash your hands well (or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer) before and after your visit. 

In general, to reduce your risk of getting COVID-19, you can take some simple steps, such as: 

  • Avoiding people who are sick or have been exposed to the virus  

  • Cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces daily (like doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones and keyboards) 

  • Washing your hands often with soap and water, or cleaning with alcohol-based hand sanitizer 

It’s also advised for pregnant women to stay home as much as possible and stay at least 6 feet away from other people if you need to go out. In addition, wear a mask or cloth face covering when in public. 

We’re Here With Trusted Care You Can Count On 

We’re here for you, from the moment your pregnancy test turns positive to your baby’s first breath. During your journey to motherhood, we’re committed to keeping you and your growing family safe. If you need us, we’re just a call or click away. All you need is your smartphone, tablet or computer. Learn more about our virtual care or call your OB/GYN’s office to schedule a video visit. 

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