In Their Own Words

Having a Baby During COVID-19

When Amy and Scott Trimble started their pregnancy journey, they couldn’t anticipate the curveball that COVID-19 would be throwing their way

COVID-19 or not, babies are still being born— and FHN is working hard to keep the experience safe and exciting for new parents. Take Amy and Scott Trimble, for example.

The couple tried for six years to give their daughter, Charli, a brother or sister. When it didn’t happen, even after taking fertility drugs, they decided it wasn’t meant to be. Two years later, Amy got pregnant. Thrilled but nervous because she was considered high-risk at age 42, her pregnancy was pretty normal until about halfway through, when a global pandemic turned her world upside down.

“Here I was, five months pregnant, and suddenly a whole lot changed. I was asked to do my job from home, I didn’t know how COVID-19 might impact our baby, and perhaps hardest of all for me,” she exclaims, “I had to limit my interaction with my entire support system. It wasn’t easy!”

Doctor Visits From Home

FHN did a lot to ease the couple’s anxiety. Because of Amy’s age, she needed to be checked frequently. To simplify appointments, FHN suggested they use telehealth visits — and even Zoom appointments — to supplement her in-clinic schedule, where she met with her providers Dr. Keith Martin and OB nurse practitioners Danielle Siedschlag and Sara Smith, all wearing masks as mandated. As her pregnancy progressed, she needed non-stress tests two times a week at the Harlem Avenue clinic, where Amy says, “The nurses were amazing. Ashton, who cared for me frequently, was pregnant at the same time and I feel like we went through it all together. It was nice to have that special bond. I felt so nurtured by everybody there.” When it came time to deliver, baby Trimble did not cooperate. “I needed to be induced,” explains Amy. “Let’s just say that things went slowly.”

Scott was allowed to join Amy for the experience, but he was the only visitor allowed and he couldn’t leave after entering the birthing center, due to restrictions brought on by the pandemic. “We started at 7:30 a.m.,” he explains,” and our baby was born at 1:48 a.m. the next morning. During those 18 hours, we were fully supported by everyone at FHN. When Charli was born, we could walk in the halls and wait on ourselves, but this time we had to stay in our room. The nurses anticipated all our needs, even setting a timer to bring us ice and water refills every few hours because we are such big water drinkers.

Jordan, Danielle, and Robin helped Amy change positions, brought a peanut ball for exercise, and rooted us on the entire time. I appreciate how our delivery team, including (hospitalist/ laborist) Dr. Simons, took care of Amy and me, and how excited they were for us when it came time to deliver. Even wearing their masks and other PPE, they were screaming ‘it’s a boy!’ when Cole was born, and really shared in our excitement and relief. They were remarkable.”

FHN–Dedicated to Safety

The Trimbles appreciated all the stringent safety guidelines implemented at both the clinic and hospital to ease patients’ minds. According to Keith Martin, MD, FACOG, and Chief Medical Officer, “We put incredible planning into making sure our obstetric offices, birthing center, and all facilities are clean, efficient, and safe for everyone. Moms are brought in a special entrance, visitors have been limited to only significant others, and there is a laser-like focus on following protocol – it is a complex approach unlike anything I have ever seen. I am very proud of our staff for their dedication to excellence and their commitment to making sure that COVID-19 does not detract from this special event. It has been some real work to go the extra mile, but with every new baby born, we are reminded that our efforts are well worth it.”