Denver's first freestanding, hospital-owned birth center will open this summer

Posted at 11:49 AM, Jun 18, 2018

DENVER — This summer, Colorado’s first and only hospital-owned, freestanding birth center will open for expecting mothers seeking a natural approach to childbirth.

The Birth Center of Denver, owned by Saint Joseph Hospital, will encompass all aspects of pregnancy in one place, said Heather Hagenson, Saint Joseph Hospital director of business development for the center. The center opened because the hospital heard from families that they wanted to experience a low-risk, more natural approach to childbirth outside of a hospital.

“Birth Center of Denver has beautifully decorated 500- to 600-square-feet birth suites with spa-like amenities with plenty of space to move around to support a natural approach to birth,” she said.

Each of the five luxurious and spacious suites has natural light, oversized tubs for hydrotherapy and birthing, birth slings, birth balls, aromatherapy, dimming lights and adjustable beds.

In addition to space for the mother, the suites have a separate area for family and loved ones to gather, complete with a TV, small refrigerator and freezer and refreshments.                                                             

“Saint Joseph Hospital has deep roots in the Denver community and has been serving Denver for 145 years,” Hagenson said. “It was also important to maintain the Denver connection with our new birth center. All of the spacious birth suites have unique Denver-based themes, designs and artwork that families will connect with, such as the 5280 Suite and the City Park Suite.”

Because the birth center encompasses all aspects of care and is freestanding — meaning it’s a home-like facility outside of the hospital — women and families can learn about pregnancy, birth and babies while feeling empowered, Hagenson said. The holistic model also offers alternative methods of pain management and customizable birth plans. In addition, certified nurse-midwives are on hand to provide prenatal care, classes, labor and delivery, postpartum assistance and newborn support.

It will be licensed as a freestanding birth center, separate from the hospital, but incorporated into the SCL Health system. This separation allows electronic medical records to be easily integrated into the Saint Joseph Hospital digital system, which will help provide a smooth transition if the newborn or mother needs to be transferred to Saint Joseph Hospital.

The Birth Center of Denver will open sometime in the summer of 2018 and will hold open houses in July.