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Bay Ridge births new birthing center

Ribbon cutting: Bay Ridgites ushered in The Birthing Center of New York on Third Avenue on March 10.
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They hope it’s the birth of something great.

The Birthing Center of New York celebrated its grand opening on Third Avenue with a ribbon cutting ceremony on March 10. The childbirth facility is intended for low-risk pregnancies and aims to provide a calm, homey environment without sacrificing the quality of care, said the center’s founder.

“We’re trying to be one step away from a living room and three steps away from a hospital,” said Bay Rigite Dr. Lisa Eng, an obstetrician-gynecologist. “I felt the need to provide women a choice outside of the hospital. But we’re still, of course, going to practice good-faith, evidence-based medicine.”

Wedged between Senator and 67th streets, the Department of Health-approved facility has four delivery rooms, each tricked out with a sofa, a television, and a shower. Instead of a sterile white, each room is a soothing pastel color, with paintings of Disney characters and Chinese art.

Expecting mothers must meet with a financial officer, tour the facility, and have prenatal care before giving birth at the center, according to Eng. Staff members speak Spanish and Chinese, and the Eng hopes to include Arabic-speaking doctors in the near future.

Doctors and nurses will help deliver the newborns, but if there are complications, the center has an arrangement with the Midwood Ambulance Service to transport patients to Lutheran Medical Center in Sunset Park.

The Bay Ridge facility is one of only two independent birthing centers in the borough — the Brooklyn Birthing Center in Midwood is the other. And with a spate of recent hospital closures, the center serves a vital need, said Eng.

“The choices in the area are dwindling — Long Island College and Victory Memorial hospitals recently closed — and so there is an over-burdening at other hospitals like Maimonides. Our center is another option and offers a safe, comfortable environment for women to have their babies.”

Reach reporter Caroline Spivack at cspivack@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260–2523. Follow her on Twitter @carolinespivack.

Posted 12:00 am, March 17, 2017
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