Hospital Choices

No matter which award-winning Bon Secours facility you choose, you will find all the support you need to have a wonderful birth experience. Saint Mary’s Hospital, St. Francis Medical Center, and Memorial Regional Medical Center provide a variety of pain relief options, promote family-centered care and welcome doulas to attend birth. We also provide lactation counseling and specialized neonatal intensive care (NICU) services as needed.

The word doula refers to an experienced individual who supports new parents during labor, delivery and/or the postdelivery period. The doula provides the mother with physical and emotional support along with her partner. Doulas working with Bon Secours-affiliated providers and with our parents are welcome at all Bon Secours hospitals. Doulas are also shown to have a beneficial effect on birth outcomes. ACOG (American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists) states that the support offered by trained labor coaches such as doulas has been associated with improved birth outcomes, including shortened labor and fewer operative deliveries.

Approaches for Ob-gyns and Maternity Care Providers to Limit Intervention During Labor and Birth in Low-Risk Pregnancies

In an effort to enhance bonding between parents and newborns and support breastfeeding, Bon Secours has introduced Magic Hour. Barring any unusual medical needs immediately following delivery, nurses dry infants and place them skin-to-skin on the mother’s chest, allowing precious time for bonding and breastfeeding.

  • Bon Secours Magic Hour is an ideal time for mothers and babies to be close and has many benefits for the baby.
  • Babies have an amazing ability to interact with their parents. They can distinguish touch, smells, tastes, sounds and sights right away.
  • Breastfed babies will nurse better when placed skin-to-skin on the mother immediately following birth.
  • A mother’s body can maintain her baby’s temperature more effectively than warm blankets and warmers.
  • Babies who spend the first 90 minutes of their lives with their mothers skin-to-skin cry less than those who are dried, wrapped and placed in a bassinet.


We subscribe to the definition of family-centered care as developed by the International Childbirth Education Association (ICEA):

“The birth of a baby represents the birth of a family. The woman giving birth and the persons significant and close to her are forming a new relationship, with new responsibilities to each other, to the baby, and to society as a whole. Family-centered reproductive care may be defined as care which recognizes the importance of these new relationships and responsibilities, and which has as its goal the best possible health outcome for all members of the family, both as individuals and as a group.

“Family-centered care consists of an attitude rather than a protocol. It recognizes a vital life event rather than a medical procedure. It appreciates the importance of that event to the woman and to the persons who are important to her. It respects the woman’s individuality and her sense of autonomy. It realizes that the decisions she may make are based on many influences of which the expertise of the professional is only one. It requires that all relevant information be made available to the woman to help her achieve her own goals, and that she be guided – but not directed – by professionals she has chosen to share the responsibility for her care.

“The practice of family-centered maternity care is founded on this philosophy and encompasses birth practitioners, birth places, and maternity-newborn care, as determined by the needs and choices of each woman and her family.”

As part of our family centered care model, we encourage new parents to “room-in” with their new babies. Rooming-In allows families to keep their baby with them throughout their stay in the hospital.   Evidence shows that Rooming-In has many benefits including better breastfeeding, early response to hunger cues, higher milk production, increased confidence in going home, safe sleep practice, and more sleep for everyone.  We provide personalized care for mom and baby and education for your family in your hospital room.  We understand that there may be times when parents (or our medical professionals) need for baby to be cared for in the nursery temporarily and encourage you to speak with your nurse about these options.