PeaceHealth Pregnancy Programs Change


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SPRINGFIELD, Ore. — Over the summer, PeaceHealth eliminated 55 positions in Lane County as a plan to reduce costs.

Because of financial strains some programs were also asked to reassess their effectiveness.

Months ago if you logged on to the parenting website, you would find a long list of classes being offered at different times through RiverBend. Those included everything from night and weekday classes to breastfeeding even a pregnancy yoga class. Now that list has been whittled down to just a few.

The manager of labor and delivery at RiverBend says during evaluation, hospital staff found that the number of people who were attending those classes was small. For instance, it found fewer than 200 people a year were attending the evening classes. To put that into perspective, the hospital delivers about 250 babies per month.

One of the educators was laid off, and another is now working for a different department.

“When I looked at the numbers of people attending, I wasn’t so disappointed as I felt we weren’t serving the community in the way we thought we were. I think we felt like we were offering the classes, and we were really getting education to the people who needed it. But when you analyze the figures, we weren’t,” said Cindy Hunter, Manager of PeaceHealth Labor and Delivery.

There will still be free tours of labor and delivery with a breastfeeding education component at the end of the tour. Also a six-hour preparation for childbirth class will still be offered on the weekends, as well as classes for spanish speaking parents.

PeaceHealth says Spanish class isn’t offered anywhere else in the community, so it didn’t want to see that one go away.

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