Delivering Hope Letter
Hello! I am SCOUT, the Stethoscope and Dana, the Doppler, is my best friend. Before I tell you more about us, please know how grateful Health Services of North Texas is to have your support and involvement. Your gifts are changing lives one patient at a time.
The Stethoscope and Doppler are a medical provider’s best friends! You may know me, SCOUT, however, you may not know all the things I do. As a stethoscope, I am a medical instrument that amplifies sounds inside the body. I listen to hearts beat, lungs breathe and intestines gurgle. I am a trusted partner to the medical provider. My job during a routine prenatal visit is to listen to the mother’s heart and lungs to make sure she is doing well. My best friend during prenatal care is Dana, the Doppler. She listens to the baby’s heart inside the mother’s tummy.
Let me tell you about hearts
- I hear about 60 to 100 beats per minute (bpm) in a mom’s heart. Her heartbeat looks like
- Dana, my friend the Doppler, listens to the baby’s heartbeat starting at 12 weeks into the pregnancy. The Doppler hears 120 to 170 beats per minute (bpm). A baby’s heartbeat is naturally more rapid than the mothers. It looks like
What Dana, the Doppler, can hear depends on the mom’s weight, the baby’s position, and the location of the placenta. Did you know that the reality of their pregnancy often sets in when moms hear their baby’s heartbeat the first time? Moms become so excited! Moms dream of what it will be like to hold their baby for the first time. They wonder what type of mother they will be. Images of their life as a family begin to take shape. Moms dream of feeding, bathing, changing poopy diapers, and loving their baby. They also worry about how to pay for these things.
Oh, we cannot forget the lungs!
I listen with the provider to the pregnant mother’s lungs during each exam. A mother’s lung sounds like swooshing – it’s a calming, rhythmic sound to the baby growing inside her.
Why is prenatal care important?
I have a big job during prenatal care. Dana and I want every mother to be healthy, have a healthy pregnancy, and deliver a healthy baby. Prenatal care is one of the best ways to stay healthy. Getting early and regular prenatal care improves the chances of a healthy mom and baby.
Prenatal visits with a healthcare provider usually include a lot of questions, a physical exam (this is when we get to work!), weight checks, a urine sample, and other diagnostic tests performed in the lab.
Prenatal care can help prevent complications and inform women about important steps they can take to protect their baby and have a healthy pregnancy. Prenatal care reduces the risk of pregnancy complications for the mother and baby and helps to make sure the medications women take are safe. It is best when a mom has a medical appointment as son as she can, ideally during the first 3 months of pregnancy.
Scout and Dana’s Story of Delivering Hope
I want you to meet a mother we helped. She received regular prenatal care during her pregnancy. Everything was normal until the 31st week (a normal pregnancy lasts 40 weeks). During the exam, the medical provider, Dana, and I noticed that the baby’s heartbeat was unusual. This led the medical provider to check the baby’s lung development.
With further exploration, the medical provider learned that the baby’s lungs were not fully developed. YIKES! Left untreated, this baby would likely not be able to breathe on its own at birth. A respirator would be required to reduce the baby’s struggle to breathe. Other complications would likely set in.
The medical provider gave the mother a shot to help speed up the development of the baby’s lungs. Even though the baby was born 6 weeks early, she was born healthy and able to breathe on her own. Her parents named her Hope. Both Dana and I were proud to assist our medical provider so that Hope could be born healthy. We have many stories like Hope’s.
Young families often need a helping hand during these early years. Pregnant moms who are uninsured, and often hourly employees, delay prenatal care due to costs. These families struggle with a monthly income that barely covers their basic expenses – rent, food, transportation, and clothing. Prenatal exams involve fees for office visits and lab work. Medical costs are overwhelming to low-income families, which may result in delays in treatment, including prenatal care. Please help low-income moms get access to the medical care they need.
Will you please consider making a gift to create access to primary care, including prenatal care, for low-income women, children, and families? YOUR gift can change the trajectory for a baby, a mother, and an entire family!