Katya Michelle Rodriguez (center) of Mercedes poses with her twin baby girls, Gabriella and Isabella, at Knapp Medical Center in Weslaco. Caring for the babies are Olivia Estrada, RN, Director of Women’s Health Services for Knapp, and Leticia Cantu, RN, of the newborn nursery at the hospital.
Mothers, newborn babies find amenities, convenience at award-winning Women’s Center at Knapp Medical Center in Weslaco
Women and newborn babies in the Mid-Valley are enjoying the beautiful experience of a child’s birth in an attractive and very convenient maternity center which is close to home and the support of their family, at Knapp Medical Center in Weslaco. The award-winning Women’s Services Department at Knapp features private rooms with a relaxing décor, including colorful “sky panels” in the ceilings which depict blue skies, clouds, palm trees and other comforting images. “Here at Knapp Medical Center, even the skylights in the ceiling are designed to provide a soothing, calming effect while mothers are in the hospital,” said Olivia Estrada, RN, Director of Women’s Health Services for Knapp Medical Center. “Our re-furbished, private post-partum rooms look pretty and appealing to the mothers. Most of them are very complimentary of how our unit looks since we refurbished the rooms.” But aside from the physical facilities, Ms. Estrada said the key ingredient in creating wonderful experiences for new families is the experienced obstetrician – gynecologists and other physician specialists, as well as specially-trained nurses at Knapp Medical Center. “We strive to give each of our patients the highest quality of care and make the birthing experience a good one,” she added. “Our goal is to establish a good relationship between each mother and her nurse, to promote continuity in the care of the patient. We try to keep the same nurse with the same patient as long as possible.” For example, if there’s a turn of events and a patient who is in labor in her Labor, Delivery & Recovery room needs to then go into the operating room for a cesarean section, the Knapp Medical Center nurses are cross-trained to assist the obstetrician in both situations. “So the same nurse will be there to care for mom in the operating room as well,” Ms. Estrada said. Following delivery of the baby, patients are moved to their own private room in Knapp’s Postpartum Unit, where they may choose to have their newborn “room-in” with them. If not, the newborn nursery is also located on the same floor, just a short distance from the postpartum rooms. “Our postpartum nurses spend a lot of time interacting with our patients,” Ms. Estrada said. “They get to help mom with the transition to motherhood.” In fact, the Women’s Services physicians and nurses at Knapp recently received very high patient satisfaction scores for responsiveness of the hospital staff and for communication with doctors and nurses. “We’re very proud of the staff; they really do an excellent job taking care of our patients,” Ms. Estrada added. An example of the nurses’ quick responsiveness to patients is a “no-pass zone” at Knapp, where nurses and other staff are required to stop and answer any call lights from patients prior to passing through the area. Women’s Services at Knapp Medical Center also features the following:
- Anesthesia care providers are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to consult with the mother’s obstetrician to meet her pain management needs.
- Highly-trained neonatologists available on a rotation basis 24 hours a day, 7 days a week specifically for Knapp Medical Center.
- All staff are trained in neonatal resuscitation through certification courses.
- State-of-the-art security for the safety of newborns and mothers
- Sibling visitations
- Free childbirth classes, including helpful tips on the benefits of breastfeeding, breathing techniques, and options for pain medication; as well as free instruction on proper use of child safety car seats (with a free car seat available for those who meet income guidelines).
The free childbirth classes are held on Monday evenings from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. and are available in English or Spanish. For more information on childbirth and car seat classes, along with other services for women at Knapp Medical Center — or to schedule a tour of the maternity center — please call 956-973-5350, 956-973-5351 or 956-969-5360, and visit www.KnappMed.org. (Pre-registration for deliveries should be scheduled by the attending physician.)