Comanche County Memorial Hospital’s Women’s and Children’s Department recently announced “TeamBirth”, a new initiative to enhance the birthing experience and improve outcomes for people giving birth and their babies. They have named their team “The Dream Team” because all of their team members dream of being the best providers available to help families achieve their parenthood dreams.

In Oklahoma, only 44 hospitals deliver babies, with The TeamBirth initiative being active at 34 of those.

CCMH’s women’s services department recently launched TeamBirth in collaboration with The Oklahoma Perinatal Quality Initiative Collaborative and Ariadne Labs – a division of Brigham and Women’s Hospital and the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston, MA to improve communication and support among patients and clinicians during birth.

“When you think of TeamBirth, and the setting of labor and delivery, and postpartum, you’re always launching a family. A new family every time. Good communication plays a role. The woman can express her preferences, desires, and she can be heard. The team will listen and work with her. So, it’s a way for us to ensure that there’s no miscommunication happening during this time period,” said Barbara O’Brien, Director of The Oklahoma Perinatal Quality Initiative Collaborative.

According to TeamBirth, research indicates that failures in communication between providers and patients account for up to 90 percent of preventable injuries during childbirth. TeamBirth was developed to address these gaps in communication to ensure that people giving birth and the clinicians who are caring for them have shared input and understanding into decisions during labor and delivery.

The TeamBirth initiative strives to use clear communication by incorporating planning boards, standardized meetings, and always putting the patient’s preferences first.

“The number one is the patient. The patient deserves the right to feel like they’re the driver of their healthcare and in the decisions being made to bring their baby into the world. While there’s a lot of talk between nursing and the patient, then the nurse and the physician, there can be some things lost in that translation. So, by bringing the conversations to the bedside we can eliminate any risk of losing anything,” added Connie Bond. manager of women’s services.

OPQIC says 90% of patients in TeamBirth birthing hospitals feel their choices were heard and that it made a positive difference in their experience.

CCMH is looking forward to implementing TeamBirth and to continuing their efforts to ensure birthing patients are centered and respected before, during, and after labor and delivery.

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