Welcome to New Life Birth Services
My name is MariMikel Penn. I am a Certified Professional Midwife (CPM) who has been spiritually and intellectually committed to safe and loving childbirth since 1974. I have given birth to six children, am a (BSN-RN) Registered Nurse with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and have been the president of New Life Birth Services Inc. since May, 1980. I have been executive director the State Licensed New Life Birth Center in Austin, Texas since December of 1986. .I have attended over 1400 births since forming New Life and have been involved in over 2000 births in some capacity.
Birth Services with MariMikel PennPrenatal CareI offer a free consultation to people interested in my services. I will spend and hour and answer questions, describe in detail the services I provide, and go over the forms used in our practice. I schedule 45-60 minutes for each visit including consultations, prenatal, and postpartum care in the Birth Center, and home visits. We have long visits in order to have the time to be thorough on a medical level and also enough time to address the emotional, spiritual, and psychological needs of the pregnant woman and her family. I want to answer all questions and concerns plus share in the joy of the miracle of life. The first two visits are scheduled a week apart. The first is a discussion of your personal history, family and gynecological histories, and a history of the present pregnancy. I draw blood for lab work and go over all initial paperwork including the contract. At the second visit, I discuss the lab results and prepare a personalized plan of prenatal care including nutrition, vitamins, exercise, and education. I do a very thorough physical with a pap smear, pelvimetry, general check-up, breast exam and more. I provide my clients with a great deal of information in all aspects of their care. Some people want to know and participate and in everything while others want less. My care is personalized to meet the individual needs of each client. I believe that information empowers people to have a safe and responsible birth experience. After the initial visits I see my clients once a month the first seven months, twice a month in the eighth month and once a week in the ninth month. These visits last forty-five minutes each. I screen for complicated and high risk pregnancies. When necessary, I refer my clients to appropriate medical care. Care includes the following:Routine lab work including blood and Rh type, complete blood count, antibody titer, rubella immunity status, and cholesterol check Monthly or occaisional lab work such as urinalysis, hematocrit, and hemoglobin, which are all included in the fee Pregnancy dates, weight, fetal heart tones, blood pressure, pulse, position, presentation, and size of the baby, urinalysis, and other vital statistics are recorded at each visit I send out any extra lab work that may be needed, however, I do have a microscope and centrifuge on site I do routine antibody screens on all Rh-negative mothers between 28 and 32 weeks and give Rhogam during pregnancy and after birth unless refused Fasting blood sugars and postprandials are done between 28 and 32 weeks to check for gestational diabetes Childbirth Classes I teach free Early Pregnancy classes every other month. These are open to the public as a community service. I go over nutrition, exercises, new ideas in childbirth, questions and answers, and show a video. Mates are welcome along family or a friend, but we ask that children ten years and older come to the nighttime classes. Feel free to ask me about exceptions. I teach Sibling Preparation Classes about once a month to get big brothers and sisters ready for the new baby and answer some of the questions brought up at such an event. The Childbirth Education Classes are designed are designed to connect the couple as a unit. A portion of the class focus is on preparing the father. Some fathers want to catch their babies while I continue to support their perineum and help prevent tears. Please see the Class Outline for the agenda of class topics. I use lots of videos, films and visual aids to enhance the learning process and to make it more fun. The classes begin in the seventh or eighth month of pregnancy and meet once or twice a week from 7 to 9 pm. Should a birth occur on a class night, there will be enough time to reschedule and complete the series of classes before anyone’s due date. I don’t require that everyone go to all the classes, but they are each important. Being well informed and taking personal responsibility for the birth experience is a necessary part of a midwife attended birth. Classes are an easy way to do that. If coming to classes is difficult for you, please let us know. We try to be negotiable on most of the ‘requirements and standard operating procedures’ of New Life.After everyone in your childbirth class has had their baby, we will arrange a New Baby Party. The whole family is invited to a wonderful pot luck dinner. Everyone can share their birth story and great food. Referrals are available for: area midwives childbirth educators laboratories lactation consultants acupuncturists naturopaths doulas obstetricians pediatricians family practitioners family centered hospitals public health services / programs personal or family counseling massage therapists Medical Back UpI have formal back-up arrangements for transport during delivery and use St. David’s Hospital in Austin, Texas. I have worked with the following individuals for consultation or referrals:Supervising Physicians for the Birth Center Dr. Jerry Hudson, MD Pediatrician Dr. John Day, MD General Practitioner Consulting Physicians for New Life Dr. David Ruiz, MD Pediatrician Dr. Tom Hughes, MD Pediatrician Dr. Karen Swenson, MD OB-GYN Dr. Brad Price, MD OB-GYN Dr. Mike Love, MD OB-GYN Dr. Jo Bess Hammer, MD OB-GYN Dr. John McIntire, MD OB-GYN Dr. Clive Polan, MD OB-GYN