Centering Pregnancy: Group Approach To Parental Care

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Pregnancy and Parental Care

A new model for prenatal care incorporates group education and discussion in addition to a patient's regular clinic visits.

Known as Centering Pregnancy, this model of care empowers women to take responsibility for their care and encourages them to interact positively with the health-care system. The University of Utah's College of Nursing is hosting a two-day Centering Pregnancy workshop on May 11-12. This workshop is designed for health-care providers and staff who specialize in prenatal care and wish to incorporate Centering Pregnancy into their practice. The workshop will be held from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. both days in the U's College of Nursing.


During the first day, participants will receive an overview of group prenatal care, including the principles behind the group model and effective leadership styles. The second day will focus on developing, implementing, and evaluating a centering program.

To register, call 801-581-8244. The registration deadline is Friday, April 20, and the cost is $100 per person. More information on Centering Pregnancy is available online at The workshop is being funded by a community grant from the March of Dimes.

For the past four years, the certified nurse-midwives in the Birth Care Health Care practice within the U's College of Nursing have used Centering Pregnancy among Hispanic women in the Ellis R. Shipp Clinic in West Valley. "This is a proven model of effective care for prenatal patients," said Debra Penney, C.N.M., M.P.H., workshop co-coordinator and assistant professor of nursing. "Patients come to the clinic for their regular prenatal check and then spend time evaluating their circumstances, sharing experiences, and learning about issues related to pregnancy, childbirth, parenting, and personal growth."

This model of pregnancy and prenatal care not only gives the provider more in-depth teaching opportunities and additional interaction with the patient but also allows the patient to participate in a peer support group, according to Penney.