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Re: Kaiser & Childbirth--Oakland or Richmond
Another consideration for L&D that doesn't come up on most East Bay Kaiser patients' radars-- consider Kaiser Vallejo.
Depending on where you live, it could be as close or closer than Walnut Creek. I delivered in Vallejo in summer 2007 and had an excellent experience, in spite of a difficult labor. I initially wanted a drug-free delivery and ended up choosing an epidural after 30 hours of labor when I stopped progressing (it got me through the final 10). Everyone on the staff there was kind, respectful, and professional. One of the midwives on staff stayed 5 hours past the end of her shift because she thought I might deliver then.
The nurses are fabulous; they have midwives in addition to the MDs; the L&D area is very nice and newer than the one in Oakland (and it has windows!) and you can walk around and labor in one of the grassy courtyards nearby during the early stages if you so choose.
I still see my ob-gyn in Oakland and love the care I receive there but would definitely deliver in Vallejo again. When I told my regular o.b. my birth story, she said that if I had delivered in Oakland, they wouldn't have been as patient with me and would have sent me to c-section, given my circumstances. I found out later that Vallejo has a relatively low (I think 15%) c-section rate. I should disclose that my partner works at KP Vallejo but is not affiliated with the ob/gyn department in any way there. --satisfied KP mama
I'm looking for recent childbirth experiences at either Kaiser Oakland or Vallejo. The most
up-to-date ones I could find in the archives for Oakland were over a year old, and I
couldn't find anything on Vallejo. If you received prenatal care and/or delivered at either
facility in the past 6-12 months, would you mind sharing your experience (and any
recommendations for NPs or MDs)? If you have your own doula, does that work within either
Choosing between Kaisers
The elevator was far from the ER (where we had to enter -- in the middle of the night), so I would have gotten a wheelchair (in hindsight). I was irritated when they were trying to admit me -- they wanted my kaiser card (I tried to tell them just the number) and they wanted me to sign stuff, etc. All very normal -- but I was dilated to 10 cm already (which no one knew at that time, and I wasn't really very vocal about how I felt like pushing already, whoops) so in hindsight, no wonder I was annoyed! That was the worst part.
Once they figured out that I was going to deliver the baby asap :) they were great. At one point I think there were 6 or 7 people in the room to make everything happen, which would not have happened at oakland since they were so full. The post partum care was just fine. I wasn't overly thrilled with the care, but I think that's because I really didn't need anything and all the stuff they are required to tell you -- about how to care for yourself and your kiddie -- I was very familiar with since this was not my first (and my last birth experience wasn't too long ago). I delivered my first at alta bates, and i would say that this was just as good an experience overall, if not better.
My husband was pretty frustrated that we had to drive to vallejo (which made me even more mad in the midst of my contractions) but in the end I had a lot more attention, quiet recovery time, and assistance than if I had been at Oakland at that time. I have a friend who was the last delivery they accepted before they started diverting and she said it was miserable. -might choose vallejo again!
[Editor] additional reviews received for Oakland
regarding Vallejo Kaiser -- a good friend just had her third baby at there, and had a great experience. This may be colored by the fact that her husband is on staff there, but it still seems to be quite a good facility. I was there for part of her labor, and physically, the labor and delivery rooms are very spacious and comfortable, and the nurses and doctors seemed to be a very friendly and competent lot. They don't have residents, but the midwife (I believe there's only one) is only there during the day. Andrea
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