Designated by the Department of Health and Human Services as a Birthing-Friendly Hospital!
A FOCUS ON FAMILY
When you deliver your baby at Morris Hospital’s Family Birthing Suites, you truly become part of our family. We get to know you by name and listen to your needs, all while focusing on the philosophy of family centered care. From the moment your baby is born, we foster an environment that allows for learning and bonding and encourage your family to become involved and help celebrate the birth of your baby.
Your baby will room in with you during your entire stay. Additionally, all nursing care for baby is done in the mother’s room including the initial bath, nursing assessments, and physician visits. This gives moms the opportunity to learn about caring for their newborn, ask questions, and be involved in caring for their baby right at their bedside.
Our obstetrical nurses are highly trained in caring for moms and babies throughout labor, as well as during and after delivery. This means the same nurse who cares for you during labor is able to continue caring for you and your baby after delivery. Our nurses are also skilled in reading fetal monitors and caring for babies who may need extra attention in our Level II Nursery. Year after year, our Family Birthing Suites staff receives recognition for excellence in patient care based on feedback from our patients.
We are fortunate to have a number of board-certified obstetricians/gynecologists on the medical staff at Morris Hospital, along with pediatricians and family medicine physicians who oversee baby’s care after delivery. We encourage expecting moms to choose and contact a physician for their baby around the start of their third trimester.
To learn more about the physicians on the Morris Hospital Medical Staff, go to www.morrishospital.org/doctors and search under the medical specialty Obstetrics & Gynecology, Pediatrics, and Family Medicine.
Prenatal Education Classes
Education is an important part of preparing for the arrival of your baby. For Childbirth & Family Classes offered through Morris Hospital, plase visit the Events & Classes page on our website. In addition, a free, breastfeeding basics class is offered through Morris Hospital Obstetrics & Gynecology Specialists.
Choose a Provider for Your Baby!
You will want to be sure to select a pediatrician or family medicine provider for your baby around the start of your third trimester. This is the provider who will oversee your baby’s care after delivery. To find a provider for your baby, please go to morrishospital.org/doctors and look under the Family Medicine and Pediatrics headings. Be sure to contact the provider that you select prior to your baby’s arrival so that you can inform them of your baby’s due date and insurance plan.
What to Bring to the Hospital
On delivery day, expecting moms should bring their ID and insurance card, slippers, and robe, clothes and blankets to bring baby home in, and a car seat. Medications, post-partum, and baby care supplies will be provided.
Before You Come to the Hospital
Please call the Family Birthing Suites to let us know you are on your way so we can get your room prepared. Our direct number is 815-942-3012. Please enter the hospital through the emergency room entrance off High Street and register at the emergency room desk. The emergency room staff will call and let us know you are here.
Our nurses and physicians are committed to providing up-to-date, evidence-based care for moms and babies, including:
Comforting Labor Support
We are committed to providing our laboring moms a variety of pain relieving methods including a rocking chair, birthing ball, warm packs and intravenous pain medications. Our experienced nurses are available to remain at the bedside to coach patients through the labor process. We also have a monitor available that may allow laboring moms to walk the hallways of our Family Birthing Suites unit.
Anesthesiologists are on-call and readily available to provide epidural pain relief.
Skin-to-Skin Care After Delivery
Placing baby skin-to-skin on the mother’s chest after delivery is a gentle way to welcome baby into the world. Skin-to-skin care has been shown to stabilize baby’s temperature, regulate his or her blood sugar, decrease crying, increase bonding, and make breastfeeding more successful. Skin-to-skin care also stabilizes baby’s heart rate, breathing, and oxygen levels. Dad is encouraged to participate as well. We ask that you limit your visitors during the first hours after birth, so you and your significant other can concentrate on your new baby during this important time.
Delaying the infant’s bath for the first 12-24 hours has been shown to decrease the chances of the infant developing low blood sugar or temperature. Research has shown that allowing the amniotic fluid and vernix (white cheesy material) to remain on the infant is beneficial. Vernix has antimicrobial properties that prevent infection and acts as an emollient to protect baby’s skin. Amniotic fluid encourages breastfeeding, as it contains the same chemicals as colostrum.
When it’s time, we will bathe baby right at the mom’s bedside. The family is encouraged to participate and photograph this experience.
Each room is equipped with a bassinet so baby can stay with mom during the entire stay. Rooming in has been shown to provide many benefits such as:
• Better sleep quality for both mother and baby
• Less crying
• More successful breastfeeding
• Increased safety
• Decreased risk of infection
• Bonding and attachment
• Earlier identification of feeding cues
When you arrive at the hospital, you will settle into one of our private birthing suites. With soft lighting, comfortable furniture, beautiful woodwork, and large windows, our birthing suites are soothing and welcoming.
Each suite is complete with a large private bathroom, shower, vanity, and sink and contains a large wardrobe, TV, and DVD player. A sleeper sofa in the suite can accommodate an overnight stay for one support person who is 18 years or older. There is a nutrition station close to every suite which offers beverages, ice, and light snacks.
Room service dining is available from 6:30 a.m.-6:30 p.m. so you and your support person can order meals from an expansive menu whenever you feel like eating. A snack cart is brought by your room midafternoon. Before discharge, you and your support person will be offered a celebratory meal to celebrate the birth of their new baby.
For patients who require a cesarean delivery, our surgical suite is located right within the Family Birthing Suites. The cesarean suite contains everything necessary for a planned or unplanned cesarean delivery without leaving the unit. After the baby’s delivery, skin-to-skin care can be provided in the surgical suite. Then, babies recover with their mom in a home-like suite. For safety reasons, only one support person can be in the surgical suite.
Patient safety is our top priority. To ensure safety for our moms and babies, we maintain a locked unit with many specialized safety measures. Visitors are required to check in at the front desk to enter and leave the Family Birthing Suites.
Video and Photography
Video and photography of the birth is prohibited for safety and security reasons but is allowed once the baby is delivered. We also ask that patients not video or photograph our staff members without their permission.
Social services are available to our patients if needed.
As a Level II Perinatal Care Provider, we have the necessary qualifications to care for women who have the potential for complicated or high-risk deliveries, as well as newborns who may require specialized services.
The nursery is located within the Family Birthing Suites, and both mom and dad can visit the nursery at any time. Family, siblings, and friends may view the baby from the viewing window of the nursery.
Morris Hospital has a perinatal affiliation with Loyola University Medical Center for mothers and babies who require an even higher level of care. Babies who need to be transferred can return to us sooner because of our Level II designation.
The American Academy of Pediatrics and American College of Obstetricians & Gynecologists, along with many other organizations, recommend exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months, with continued breastfeeding along with solid foods for a year or longer.
Breastfeeding is the best food for your baby. Your body makes your breastmilk specifically for your baby. This means your baby is getting the nutrition that is needed at every stage of your infant’s life. Your milk changes based on your baby’s needs. Your baby’s needs change throughout the day, during growth spurts, and during sickness. How great is it to know you are the only one that can provide this for your baby?
Breastfeeding has many benefits for both mom and baby that no other food can provide. These great benefits include:
• Breastmilk protects your baby against sickness, diabetes, certain childhood cancers, obesity, asthma, allergies, and sudden infant death syndrome.
• Breastfeeding provides mom with protection from certain cancers and heart disease.
• Breastfeeding can help mom lose weight faster.
We are committed to providing breastfeeding mothers the support and education they need to have a successful breastfeeding experience. During one of your visits in the OB office, be sure to ask about our Breastfeeding Basics Class. In addition, Certified Lactation Consultants, who are also obstetrical nurses, are available to provide breastfeeding assistance. After moms go home, we are available by phone or in person for questions or feeding evaluations.
Please go to our main Visitor Information page for current visitor guidelines for the Family Birthing Suites. All visitors must be free from signs of infection and fever, sign in, and receive a visitor’s pass at the Family Birthing Suites front desk.
We also ask visitors to refrain from visiting during the initial hours after birth to allow mom and dad important bonding time with their new baby.
For safety reasons, only one person 18 years or older may stay overnight.
Clergy may visit anytime. We request that clergy check in at the nurses’ station before visiting.
Flowers and Balloons
Flowers and balloons are welcome. However, latex balloons are not permitted in the hospital due to allergies and patient safety.
Due to privacy laws, we will not give information to family or friends regarding our moms and babies.
Length of Stay
New moms are required to stay a minimum of 24 hours after birth. Typically, there is a two overnight stay for vaginal birth. A cesarean section birth stays for 3-4 overnights. Before leaving the hospital, both mom and baby must be discharged by their physicians. Each baby must have a hearing screen, 24-hour metabolic screening lab draw, and a cardiac screening.
Occasionally there are times when a mom is discharged before the baby is ready to go home. In this case, moms may be allowed to “nest” with their baby. Babies may stay in the mom’s room if unit census allows, or they may be moved to our “nesting” room when available, which is located in the Family Birthing Suites. Sometimes babies are required to stay in our Level II Nursery and other times they will be allowed to “nest” in the room with their mom.
PHYSICIANS FOR MOM AND BABY
The Morris Hospital Obstetrics & Gynecology Specialists are excellent health care resources for women at all stages of life. Our board-certified obstetrician/gynecologists specialize in pregnancy, labor and postpartum care and normal and high risk pregnancies (diabetes, hypertensive disorders, seizure disorders, endocrine conditions, blood clotting disorders, drug addiction), working closely with Maternal Fetal Medicine specialists at Loyola University Medical Center.
To schedule an appointment or request more information about the Morris Hospital Obstetrics & Gynecology Specialists, please call 815.941.0441.
To see all of the obstetricians/gynecologists on the Morris Hospital Medical Staff, please visit our online provider directory.
Having a baby is an exciting time. To ensure a smooth journey, we recommend that you select a pediatrician or family medicine provider for your baby around the start of your third trimester. This is the provider who will oversee your baby’s care after delivery.
The Pediatricians and Family Medicine providers on the Morris Hospital Medical Staff are committed to delivering excellent care for young patients and their families. To find a Pediatrician or Family Medicine provider near you, please visit www.morrishospital.org/doctors.
When contacting one of the providers prior to your baby’s arrival, please be ready to give your baby’s due date and insurance plan.