Back to school with Delfina: practicing whole-person care

Jessica Barra
VP of Product
at Delfina
min read

For many parents, pregnancy is nothing new. But that doesn’t mean that it isn’t challenging—especially while taking care of other little ones. Now that September has rolled around, many parents breathe a sigh of relief: the kids are back to school! Every pregnancy is different, and so is every parent, and every family. That’s why we practice whole-person care: caring for each patient as a person, with an understanding that health consists of social, mental, emotional, and structural factors in addition to the physical. 

Nearly 70% of our pregnant patients are already raising kids, juggling back-to-school shopping, childcare, and soccer practice while they’re trying to prepare for birth. One way of practicing whole-person care is acknowledging that parents have busy schedules, and that they aren’t experiencing their pregnancies in a vacuum. Our digital pregnancy care platform lets patients get care on their own terms: with telehealth offerings for nutritionists, mental health specialists, and doulas, patients can access virtual care through a number of channels. 

When patients do have in-person prenatal appointments, they can optimize those short 15 minutes with our Delfina Guides connecting them to transportation and childcare resources. The clinicians that Delfina partners with also have access to their own Provider Dashboard. This dashboard continually updates them on their patients’ symptoms and displays if a patient could potentially benefit from an intervention. Now, clinicians can use their one-on-one time with patients more effectively, so that patients can make it to school pick-up with plenty of time to spare, all their questions answered. 

A pregnancy can be stressful enough without having to manage other childcare responsibilities. Our Delfina Guides are all trained doulas, and meet with our patients virtually each week to ensure that they are supported in their pregnancy journeys. The Guides are there to answer questions, assuage concerns, and troubleshoot issues with the Delfina Care platform. Our Guides support our patients with navigating the nonclinical experience of pregnancy, enabling their healthcare providers to focus on clinical needs. At Delfina, whole-person care means delivering our pregnant patients the support that they need from both clinical and non-clinical angles. 

Stress during pregnancy can lead to something more serious: about 1 in 5 women experience mental health symptoms during pregnancy. Our Delfina Medical Group mental health clinicians are specifically trained in maternal mental health and are only a reference away. These clinicians are available via telehealth. In order to reduce anxiety in as many ways as possible, we also feature OBGYN-curated educational materials. Now, there’s no need for our patients to stay up into the wee hours of the morning scrolling through Google: we’ve got the information readily available. 

We also prioritize support and education throughout the whole pregnancy, so that once the baby comes, parents are prepared for the life transition. With lactation counseling, group classes, and one-on-one meetings with our Delfina Guides, we leave no stone unturned in supporting our patients’ pregnancy journeys. 

Now that the kids are back in school, we hope that our patients can take a moment for themselves. Maybe they’ll do some prenatal yoga, finally schedule that meeting with a mental health clinician, or take advantage of our educational materials. Whether it’s the first pregnancy or the fifth, we’ve got them covered.

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