Published on May 12th, 20170
St. Luke’s University Health Network Announces Baby & Me Support Center and Expanded Services
Rima Strassman, MD, Named Medical Director of Lactation Services
Bethlehem, PA (5/10/2017) – St. Luke’s University Health Network announced the establishment of the St. Luke’s Baby & Me Support Center, along with a series of new Women & Children’s initiatives. The Center is slated to open late summer 2017.
Renowned pediatrician and lactation expert Rima Strassman, MD, will serve as Medical Director of Lactation Services.
“Today’s announcement clearly demonstrates our ongoing commitment to mothers, babies, fathers and support persons before, during and after they have a baby,” said Carol Kuplen, President of St. Luke’s University Hospital – Bethlehem and Chief Nursing Officer of St. Luke’s University Health Network. “We’re excited to continue our mission of providing exceptional, quality maternal and newborn care to area residents.”
The most comprehensive program of its kind in the region, the St. Luke’s Baby & Me Support Center, located at 1425 Eighth Avenue in Bethlehem, will provide moms and family members with a variety of services commonly needed before, during and after pregnancy in one convenient location. Services will include pre-and post-natal classes, lactation consultations, post-partum health support, support groups and childcare for siblings.
“This new program really represents a continuance of what St. Luke’s has always been known for – providing the highest level of maternal and newborn care through a compassionate and personalized approach,” said Jared King, St. Luke’s Women’s and Children’s Service Line Administrator.
The St. Luke’s philosophy of care implements evidenced-based practices such as skin to skin contact, rooming in and strong encouragement of breastfeeding while listening to and respecting each patient’s choice and personalizing care accordingly.
Israel Zighelboim, MD, Chair, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, St. Luke’s University Health Network, Jennifer Janco, MD, Chair of Pediatrics, St. Luke’s University Health Network, Carol Kuplen, President, St. Luke’s University Hospital – Bethlehem; Chief Nursing Officer, St. Luke’s University Health Network, Jared King, Service Line Administrator, Women’s and Children’s Services, St. Luke’s University Health Network
St. Luke’s is offering patients many additional services to help optimize the care they receive and experience. The St. Luke’s Baby & Me Support Center will also include:
Prenatal classes will be offered for expecting moms, fathers, support persons and their families to help them prepare to have and care for a baby. Fun and engaging activities such as mom and baby yoga will support moms’ and babies’ physical and emotional wellness.
Lactation Support Services
As part of St. Luke’s core principles of mother and baby care and guidelines established by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the St. Luke’s Baby & Me Support Center will also include lactation services provided by International Board Certified Lactation Consultants who will work with moms and babies in St. Luke’s Family Birth Centers and at the Center, giving moms continuity of care.
Post-Partum Emotional Wellness Services
St. Luke’s Behavioral Health Therapists will be integrated in the St. Luke’s Baby & Me Support Center to help moms who are experiencing post-partum depression symptoms, a condition that affects 15 percent of new moms nationally.
Additional Baby & Me services include:
Baby & Me Mobile App
As part of the initiative, St. Luke’s is launching a new Baby & Me mobile app to help guide parents throughout their journeys from pregnancy to parenthood. The app features information on the stages of pregnancy, health tips, labor and birth, newborn care, as well as schedules for all classes, events and tours. Users of the app will be able to use the ‘find a doctor’ tool, track appointments, time contractions and record newborn feeding schedules.
New NICU Cameras
St. Luke’s will be implementing Baby & Me Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) live streaming video at its Level III NICU at St. Luke’s University Hospital – Bethlehem –the highest level NICU in the region — and at its Level II NICU at St. Luke’s– Allentown Campus. This will allow parents and family members to securely watch their babies in St. Luke’s NICUs remotely. Internet-based, secure cameras will be placed at each bedside for 24-hour viewing via a secure account on a computer, tablet or smart phone. The system will help promote bonding between parents and their premature babies, who often need to stay in the hospital for extended periods.
“At St. Luke’s, expectant moms know their doctors and their doctors know them,” said Israel Zighelboim, MD, Chair, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, St. Luke’s University Health Network. “Moms have the opportunity to establish a personal relationship with their doctor – the one who knows them best and who will be their true navigator.”
“Our frequent and personal interaction with babies in the weeks and months after birth allow pediatricians to serve as the initial trusted contact to connect mothers with helpful services – like those offered at St. Luke’s Baby & Me Support Center – to remain on a journey of wellness,” said Jennifer Janco, MD, Chief of Pediatrics, St. Luke’s University Health Network. “I feel strongly that every one of us is a ‘me’ to a new baby, and every one of us has an opportunity to support and positively impact each baby with whom we interact. We look forward to continuing to lead the way to better health in the region through excellent care of moms and their babies.”