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Postpartum & Newborn Care

The excitement and challenges of having a newborn are easier to navigate when you and your baby are in good health. Virginia Mason Franciscan Health delivers comprehensive postpartum and newborn care that optimizes well-being. Our services span the entire fourth trimester, from your baby’s birth through their first 12 weeks of life.

Postpartum care at Virginia Mason Franciscan Health

Most women receive postpartum care from the same provider team that delivered their baby. All our providers are in regular communication, so you won’t have to keep track of the details of your pregnancy or birth experience. These efforts help us tailor postpartum care to your needs.

Highlights of postpartum care include:

  • Compassion: Our team cares deeply about any difficulties you are experiencing, and we’re here to help. We help you get relief from physical issues such as vaginal discomfort, bladder control concerns and hemorrhoids. If you are experiencing challenges feeding your baby, on-site breastfeeding support may be available.
  • Mental health support: We offer a drop-in support group (Balance After Birth), which provides a welcoming, nonjudgmental space for new parents to discuss emotional changes and challenges.
  • Education and resources: We provide information about newborn and postpartum topics, like nutrition and sexual health, during each visit. You also have access to a range of family education resources. We offer parenting classes and can connect you with community resources that make it easier to support your growing family.

Newborn care: Why choose us?

From the moment your child is born, you want to keep them healthy and safe. At Virginia Mason Franciscan Health, we have the same goal. Our team delivers high-quality newborn care that helps babies thrive. We form trusting relationships with you and your child to build a solid foundation for a healthy life. 

Highlights of our program include: 

  • Family medicine providers: These providers care for your entire family, and some deliver babies. If you already have a family medicine provider, this option enables your baby to receive care from someone you already know and trust. Your baby can receive care from the same provider through all phases of childhood and into adulthood.
  • Pediatricians: You may also opt for one of our pediatricians. These providers have in-depth knowledge of children’s physical, mental, social and developmental needs. Pediatricians are an excellent choice for families who prefer a provider that specializes in working with children.
  • Comprehensive care: We are attentive to your baby’s development and progress toward milestones like crawling. When your baby is sick, we quickly determine a diagnosis and recommend appropriate therapy. Providers also discuss important newborn topics, such as safety, immunizations and when to contact us for help.
  • Convenience: Family medicine providers and pediatricians are available in clinics throughout the Puget Sound. Many of our experts offer online scheduling and video visits, making it easier to access care when your baby needs it.

Nationally recognized postpartum care
Saint Francis Hospital and St. Elizabeth Hospital are among America’s Best Maternity Hospitals according to Newsweek magazine. In addition to high-quality maternity and childbirth services, we also deliver exceptional postpartum care. We are among a select few programs in the region to maintain this honor.

Postpartum and newborn care: What to expect

There will be regular postpartum and newborn care visits during your fourth trimester. Here’s what to expect:

  • In the weeks following your baby’s birth, we check to make sure your body is healing as expected. We also address common concerns affecting your health, your baby’s well-being and changes to family life.

    These may include: 

    • Recovering from childbirth: We assess how vaginal tears or C-section incisions are healing.
    • Breastfeeding: We’ll want to know how often your baby is feeding and if you are experiencing any challenges.  
    • Pregnancy weight loss and nutrition: We help you set realistic expectations and may provide diet recommendations that help you get back to your pre-pregnancy weight.
    • Postpartum depression: If you are experiencing the baby blues, we provide reassurance and discuss ways to help you feel better. 
    • Newborn care: These discussions may cover umbilical cord care, feeding, bathing and safety.
    • Sexual health and family planning: Experts discuss when you may be able to resume sexual activity and whether you wish to go back on birth control.
  • Newborn visits enable us to assess your baby’s health. Frequent visits in the first several months make it possible to detect and manage potential issues in earlier stages. These visits also allow you to ask us questions and receive support.

    Newborn exams typically involve:

    • Checking for complications, such as jaundice and breathing issues
    • Assessing how well the umbilical cord or circumcision (in boys) is healing
    • Weighing your baby to determine if they are gaining weight
    • Asking how often your baby feeds, sleeps and has a wet or dirty diaper
    • Performing a physical exam
    • Giving immunizations to lower the risk of preventable diseases, such as hepatitis and pneumonia
    • Monitoring your baby’s progress toward milestones such as smiling and grasping

Schedule an appointment

Find out more about our pregnancy and childbirth services or make an appointment.