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By Joy Daughtery Dickinson, Executive Editor
Performing fewer prenatal visits for women with low-risk pregnancies reduced the burden on patients and saved resources at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN.
The program, named “OB Nest,” puts one nurse at the center of each woman’s care. Rather than having 12-14 visits with the doctor, these patients see their OB/GYN for eight office visits, although more were optional. They also received equipment to monitor the baby’s heart rate and the mother’s blood pressure at home. Also, they had the option to participate in an online community for other patients in the OB Nest project, as well as the nurses caring for them.
The response has been positive. One pregnant woman commented that having fewer visits reduced the need for her and her husband to change their work schedules.
“This fulfills the holy grail of what patients expect today,” says Abimbola Famuyide, MBBS, chair of the department of obstetrics and gynecology and study principal investigator. “How can we continue to improve patient experience and clinical outcomes, while, at the same time, keep costs down?” The findings were presented at this year’s annual meeting of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.(For more information on prenatal care, see our OB/GYN Clinical Alert. Subscribe here.)