As a special preview of the LA Baby Show, coming up on the weekend of November 5-6, we have interviewed or profiled many of the Show’s vendors and participants. You can read all about them on this Show blog, but of course the real fun is experiencing the Baby Show in person.
Tickets to the Baby Show are $30 per family, and $20 per individual, and can be purchased here.
We are excited to introduce Birth and Beyond as a programming and parenting partner for the LA Baby Show! They are a leading pregnancy and childbirth advice and assistance group in Los Angeles.
Pregnancy and childbirth can be scary for parents, even those who have done it before. You have to place your trust in the hands of medical professionals, and in the flurry of preparation, it’s easy to forget that you as the mother and father are the ones in charge. Birth and Beyond was started by an RN who wanted to put the power back in the hands of the parents.
We spoke with Lizabeth Baker-Wade, the founder and owner of Birth and Beyond.
For someone unfamiliar with Birth and Beyond, how would you describe the company’s mission and core offerings? What is the background of Birth and Beyond? When did it start, and how has it evolved since then?
Birth And Beyond is the name I gave my modest birth education business in 2002. At the time, Birth And Beyond was made up of me, a registered nurse with 5 years of experience in labor and delivery. As my classes grew and my knowledge base expanded I began to invite other like-minded teachers with diverse philosophies to join me. This blended group of people makes up Birth and Beyond with LA birth Partners. I am in the unique position of having 25 years of experience as a labor nurse, birth educator, birth doula and mentor. My mission is to bring the most excellent evidence based information to my classes and to continue to drive nurses, obstetricians and hospital administrators to be resolute in bringing evidence based practice into hospital labor and delivery.
“Evidence-based care means care that is first based on the highest-quality, most current scientific evidence, and is tailored to the individual needs of the patient. As simple of a concept as that may be, most people are surprised to find that this model is not in practice in much of American childbirth.
Research shows that some of the most common practices in U.S. hospitals are contrary to what evidence shows is best—and most women experience care that actually increases the chances that they or their babies will be injured or develop complications. Unfortunately, American maternity care is driven by several factors other than what is best for moms and babies. Perhaps the most surprising one is tradition: healthcare, and especially maternity care, is extremely slow to change. Some common practices today—separating newborns from their mothers at birth, having women push on their backs, putting labor on strict timelines—are rooted in protocols and beliefs from the 1940s and 1950s that have long been debunked by science.”
What are the most popular and/or newest services or classes from Birth and Beyond?
Birth And Beyond and Los Angeles Birth Partners together bring the philosophies of Hypnobirthing, Natural childbirth, Prepared Childbirth, Infant Care, a host of different classes and support groups for expectant parents, new parents babies and toddlers.
What sets Birth and Beyond apart from other birthing and pregnancy classes?
I teach my class based on my experience and actual practice in the delivery room. The most important objective is the see to it that the parents understand fully how a hospital-based labor and delivery unit operates. To ease them into the understanding that hospital labor and delivery units may not always function in a way that best supports birthing women and their partners. There are those of us in this community who struggle to achieve this goal as it not always in line with our obstetrician’s beliefs and practices. Parents do not really understand that they as patients have rights to refuse unnecessary medical intervention, to request and use alternative methods for comfort in labor and labor support and should in no way be coerced, threatened or abandoned for planning a less conventional birth.
What would you want Birth and Beyond’s audience to learn or see at the LA Baby Show?
I would love an opportunity to explain to parents ways they can have the honest, frank and straightforward conversations necessary to have the most rewarding birth experience possible within the hospital setting. I would like them to know that their hospital birth experience can be more like a birth center experience if they understand how to communicate with the obstetrician and above all find one that is in line with evidence based philosophy. Things are changing for the better! More nurses and a good number of obstetricians are insisting that we do everything we can to improve maternal/fetal outcomes in this country.
To learn more about Birth and Beyond, visit birthandbeyond.net