Pregnancy can be an exciting—and anxious—nine months. You may wonder, “Am I doing everything I can to prepare for this baby?”
From routine prenatal care to high-risk pregnancies
Chances are you’re doing everything you can to keep you and your little one healthy. Although, most pregnancies and birth experiences go smoothly, if complications come up, our medical team and neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) are equipped to handle even the littlest of patients.
We are delighted to share in the special time of your life. We have all you need to help you become prepared for what most describe as their biggest challenge and reward.
Preparing for pregnancy
When you decide you’re ready to start a family, give your body—and your future baby—a healthy advantage. We will give you a check-up, share tips for preparing for pregnancy and talk to you about potential risk factors.
If you’re like us, “It doesn’t matter as long as it’s healthy.” Even if problems arise over the course of your pregnancy, you can count on St. Vincent Healthcare to give you and your baby the care you both need.
Our healthcare providers can support you no matter if you want a low-intervention birth, a traditional birth or need additional care for a high-risk pregnancy. Your team may include:
Family medicine doctors
Maternal-fetal medicine specialists
What kind of rooms are available?
Take a tour of our mother and newborn unit. We have 12 beautiful and private birthing suites and two specially-designed operating rooms for cesarean sections, if necessary.
Register for a tour by calling 406-237-3348.
What if my baby needs specialized care after birth?
We were the first Level III NICU in Billings. If your baby is born prematurely or needs a little help after birth, he or she can receive the high-quality care right here at home, including:
Advanced imaging such as CT, MRI and echocardiography
Pediatric surgery and other subspecialties
Ventilators, oxygen and IV therapy
When your little one is in the NICU, it can be a little overwhelming. A family support specialist with the March of Dimes can help make your stay a little more comfortable with scrapbooking sessions and a “parent hour” that includes an evening meal, education and other activities.
Children who graduate from the St. Vincent Healthcare NICU and meet certain criteria are contacted about taking part in the High-Risk Follow-Up Clinic program. This program helps with any needs they may have as they develop.
In the event that the unexpected happens during your pregnancy and you or your baby needs urgent medical attention, St. Vincent Healthcare’s HELP Flight can get you and your baby to the hospital via helicopter or fixed-wing aircraft.
HELP Flight serves:
Eastern to Mid-central Montana
Western North Dakota
Our specialized OB transport nurses will care for you and any pregnancy complications until you’re transported to St. Vincent for continued support.
At St. Vincent Healthcare, nearly 90% percent of our new moms plan to breastfeed their babies with the majority choosing to nurse exclusively. No matter how you choose to feed your baby, our goal is to support you and make sure your baby is healthy.
Breastfeeding can be challenging—especially for first-time moms. If you choose to breastfeed, consider taking a breastfeeding class.
During your stay, our breastfeeding experts can help you understand your baby’s feeding cues, share information on good nutrition and teach you how to tell if your baby is being adequately fed.
St. Vincent Healthcare was the first hospital in southeastern Montana to become a Designated Baby-Friendly birth facility. Baby-Friendly is a designation given by the World Health Organization (WHO) and UNICEF to hospitals that have created the best possible environment for breastfeeding.
What can I expect from a Baby-Friendly hospital?
Assistance with breastfeeding immediately after birth
Care for your baby at your bedside so we can teach you about your baby’s "readiness-to-eat" signals
Discouraging bottles or formula supplements for breastfed babies unless medically necessary
Discouraging the use of pacifiers until breastfeeding is well-established
Skin-to-skin contact immediately after birth, which is important for your baby’s health
St. Vincent Healthcare has been designated a Cribs for Kids ® National Gold Certified Safe Sleep hospital for our commitment to best practices and education on infant safe sleep.
What parents need to know to create a safe sleep environment:
Always place a baby on their back to sleep, for naps and at night, to reduce the risk of SUID.
Use a firm sleep surface, covered by a fitted sheet; a crib, bassinet, portable crib or play yard that conforms to the safety standards of the Consumer Product Safety Commission is recommended.
The baby should not sleep in an adult bed, on a couch or on a chair alone, with a parent, or with anyone else.
Keep the baby’s sleep area in the same room where the parent(s) sleep (for the infant’s first year). Room sharing not bed sharing. Always place the baby in a safety-approved crib, bassinet or portable crib for sleep.
Sitting devices like bouncy seats, swings, infant carriers or strollers should not be used for routine sleep.
Keep soft objects such as pillows and blankets, toys and bumpers out of the baby’s sleep area.
Wedges and positioners should not be used.
Do not smoke during pregnancy or allow smoking around your baby.
Do not let your baby get too hot during sleep.
Breastfeed your baby.
Give your baby a dry pacifier that is not attached to a string for naps and at night to reduce the risk of SUIDS after breastfeeding is established.
Supervised skin-to-skin is recommended for all mothers and infants immediately following birth, regardless of feeding or delivery, (as soon as mother is medically stable, awake and able to respond to her newborn) and to continue for at least an hour. Once mother starts to get sleepy, baby is returned to the bassinet.