Editor’s note: This story is part of the Eat, Play, Live special section.
A private hospital room at Mount Nittany Medical Center might not be the most romantic setting for a nice dinner, but it’s one of the final services provided to families who just welcomed a baby before being discharged.
Manager of Marketing and Communications Lee Ann Tripp said families are able to order a gourmet dinner of their choice, which is provided by the hospital with a table, white tablecloth and relaxed setting.
It’s just one of many services Mount Nittany Medical Center’s labor and delivery unit offers to patients and their families.
And it’s a place that’s more than just a branch of the hospital, where staff goes beyond delivering babies and providing medical services.
It’s the kind of environment that’s like an extended family
Shreya Patel, OB/GYN doctor with Mount Nittany Physician Group
“It’s the kind of environment that’s like an extended family,” said Shreya Patel, a obstetrics and gynecology doctor with Mount Nittany Physician Group, who’s been with the health care service since 2008. “It’s a special unit, and lucky for me, I’m able to work with (them).”
It offers services that include labor and maternity care, couplet care, nutrition and culinary services and education classes for parents-to-be.
Families are even provided with walkthroughs before delivery and given information on services for their baby and families for future medical care.
Tripp said it’s all to get the patients acquainted with how the medical staff practices.
But it’s the small things that make Mount Nittany Medical Center special, and what Patel said, “is a nice gesture for a new beginning.”
Every time a baby is born, a lullaby is played through the hospital as a notice to hospital patrons and staff.
Tripp said it was a tradition started in 2001.
1,452 babies were delivered at MNMC in 2015
There were 1,452 deliveries at the medical center last fiscal year, Tripp added.
And the unit wouldn’t be as successful without teamwork.
Patel said doctors, nurses and other medical staff work closely with each other and patients and their families to make sure it’s a comfortable and easy adjustment.
“It should be a happy time, and there is an expectation too that meets needs for mom and baby,” Patel said. “It’s the ultimate teamwork experience to make sure that happens.”
Patel said she has many special memories at Mount Nittany, but none that match up to the experience she had delivering her two children who are now 15 and 12 years old.
“It might sound selfish, but my own deliveries are probably the most special, because I still see the nurses around,” she said. “There is good trust, and that speaks to the kind of environment you’re in.”
Mount Nittany Health has 9 OB/GYN doctors