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Innovative Perinatal Education Management Service: Developing a Family-Centered, Hospital-Based Perinatal Education Program

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The development of a family-centered, comprehensive perinatal education program for a large, urban hospital system is described. This program was developed in conjunction with the building of a new women's center and, although the authors were fortunate that several opportunities for educational program development were linked to this project, many of the steps taken and the lessons learned can be helpful to anyone desiring to develop a similar program. This article relates perinatal education to the principles of family-centered maternity care, outlines the criteria for a quality educational program, gives rationale for this type of program development, and offers practical suggestions for starting or enhancing a perinatal education program within a hospital system.

Keywords: Lamaze method; birth; birth centers; childbirth; hospital birthing centers; organizational; psychoprophylactic method

Document Type: Standard Article


Affiliations: 1: MARCIA HASKINS WESTMORELAND is operations coordinator for the “WomenFirst” program at Northside Hospital in Atlanta, Georgia. She is also president of the Lamaze International Greater Atlanta Chapter. 2: ELAINE ZWELLING is a senior consultant with Phillips + Fenwick, a member of the advisory board of the Pampers Parenting Institute, and director of the Lamaze International Childbirth Educator Program in the College of Public Health at the University of South Florida in Tampa.

Publication date: October 1, 2000

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