Childbirth

St. Joseph Medical Center delivers more babies than any other hospital in Central Pierce County, so when the time finally arrives to give birth, we have the experience and a skilled and compassionate team ready to help care for you and your baby – even newborns with critical medical needs, right on site.

Franciscan Family Birth Centers offer:

  • Private labor rooms with whirlpool tubs
  • Private post-delivery suites with private bathrooms
  • Space for partner or other supporters
  • In-room baby bassinets and rocking chairs
  • Care for mom and baby as one (“couplet care”)
  • Room service meals
  • Web nursery to share baby photos online (St. Joseph, only)
  • Progressive birthing support tools, including labor balls and stools, relaxation techniques and hydrotherapy
  • Inpatient Lactation Consultants
  • Social Services, as needed
  • 24-hour anesthesia
  • On-unit ultrasound

St. Joseph Level IIIA NICU: The highest level of care for critical infants

While every patient at any of the Franciscan Family Birth Centers has access to the quality and compassionate care of our skilled labor and delivery specialists, perinatologists for maternal-fetal medical care during high-risk pregnancies, and neonatologists in the case of premature births, the Level IIIA Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at St. Joseph Medical Center is right on site and available for highly fragile infants who have critical medical needs. This Level IIIA NICU provides a region-wide service, supporting all three Franciscan Family Birth Centers.

Vaginal birth after Cesarean (VBAC) birthing option available at St. Joseph

St. Joseph Family Birth Center now offers the vaginal birth after Cesarean, or VBAC, option for women who want it, as long as their health and medical history make them good candidates for a safe vaginal delivery. In the past, mothers did not have the option to have a vaginal delivery after they delivered a baby by C-section. However, thanks to advancements in surgical techniques, women today don’t have to rule out the possibility of VBAC. This deliver option is supported by experienced physicians and midwives and a depth of resources including 24/7 emergency physician care through our OB Hospitalists. St. Joseph's OB Hospitalists enhance patient safety and care by ensuring that a board-certified physician specializing in obstetrics is in the medical center—and immediately available at all times—24 hours a day, 365 days a year. The St. Joseph Family Birth Center also offers some of the most sought-after choices and amenities available today—from water birth deliveries, to superior midwifery care, to private labor-delivery rooms, and more.