Allegiance Health Offers Expanded Services for Mothers and Babies
August 5, 2011
Jackson, Mich. — Allegiance Health is pleased to announce an expansion of services available to mothers and babies. These services include:
- Maternal Fetal Medicine Clinic
- Pediatric Echocardiograms
- Enhanced Security Measures
Maternal Fetal Medicine Clinic
Maternal Fetal Medicine Clinic provides specialized maternity care for women experiencing an “at risk” pregnancy.
Perinatologists Kristie Keeton, MD, and Jennifer Williams, MD, provide consultations to women who are experiencing high risk pregnancies. These specialists have advanced knowledge of the obstetrical, medical, genetic and surgical complications of pregnancy and their effects on mother and baby. They have advanced training in dealing with complex diagnostic and therapeutic procedures during pregnancy. In most cases, the perinatologist will work in consultation with a patient’s obstetrician, who will continue providing care during pregnancy.
Director of Women’s and Children’s Services Jenny Wren said, “The established, collaborative relationships that have been formed between the obstetrician, perinatologists, pediatric hospitalists and neonatologists make it possible to provide improved continuity of care for these at risk patients who may have a baby who requires specialized care as well.”
These perinatologists provide expert diagnosis and treatment of pregnancy, including:
- Pre-conception counseling
- Prenatal diagnosis
- Maternal age (very young or advanced)
- Multiple gestations or previous miscarriages
- Cardiovascular and hypertensive disorders
- Pre-existing and gestational diabetes
- Ultrasound evaluation
- Pregnancy complications
Nutritional support is also provided. This program is a collaborative effort between Integrated Health Associates (IHA), Saint Joseph Mercy Health System and Allegiance Health. The Maternal Fetal Medicine Clinic is located on the 4th floor of the hospital. Patients may call (517) 796-6496 for more information.
Pediatric echocardiograms are now available on an inpatient and outpatient basis for young patients of Allegiance Health through telemedicine. Video is streamed to a pediatric cardiologist at the Detroit Medical Center (DMC) who remotely supervises the performance of the echocardiogram. The DMC cardiologist will review the study and generate a report for the child’s physician.
Echocardiograms are considered the most effective tests to demonstrate the structure and function of the components of the heart. The echocardiogram can measure the size and thickness of the heart’s chambers, the operation of the valves in the heart, and how the heart is handling the pumping of blood through the chambers and heart valves.
Typically pediatric echocardiograms are used for newborns to detect structural abnormalities of the heart (such as a hole between the chambers) and show valve shape, motion, narrowing or leaking. Echocardiograms are also used to evaluate heart murmurs in both newborns and pediatric patients. The pediatric echocardiograms are also useful on an outpatient basis for follow-up and repeat echocardiograms.
Advantages of pediatric echocardiograms to patients and their parents:
- Saves drive time for parents
- Offers confidence that the pediatric cardiogram is being read in real time
- Provides the test in a friendly, familiar setting
Enhanced Security Measures
Enhanced security measures on the 4th Floor Mother/Baby Unit include:
- Hugs Protection Security System for infants and children
- Designated visiting hours and guidelines—Unit doors will be open from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. and locked from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. to allow limited access to secure areas. (Visitors can be “buzzed” in via an intercom/camera system during locked hours.)
Diana Showerman, RN, manager of Special Care Nursery said, “We’re always working to improve staff and customer satisfaction. This new system will provide an additional level of comfort and security for both staff and families.”