Located in the Midwood neighborhood, Brooklyn Birthing Center (BBC) and in Midtown, the Jazz Birth Center of Manhattan (Jazz) are the only private, freestanding birthing centers, licensed and accredited in metro New York. The midwifery led birth centers offer high-quality, family-centered care, allowing low-risk women the freedom and flexibility to have their unmedicated birth in a calm, home-like environment. The birth centers are members of the American Association of Birth Centers, and follow accreditation by the Commission for the Accreditation of Birth Centers. For more information about these rigorous markers of quality, see here and here.
Brooklyn Birthing Center and Jazz Birth Center are staffed by the Brooklyn Midwifery Group. Our experienced, licensed and board-certified midwives are deeply committed to supporting and empowering clients and their families. In addition to prenatal care, our midwives offer annual exams, family planning services, and BRCA testing (which assesses the genetic risk for breast, ovarian, and colon cancer). A nutritionist and a lactation consultant are also available by appointment.
If you are interested in having your baby at BBC or Jazz birthing centers, please call 718-336-4119 or click here to sign up for an orientation!
Frequently Asked Questions
Are there women excluded from birthing at the birth center?
We do not allow a trial of labor after a previous cesarean section. We do not accept women who are having twins. Low risk women who are healthy and do not suffer from conditions listed as exclusions in our Practice Protocols and Procedures are good eligible candidates for a birthing center birth.
What amenities are available for laboring clients and families at BBC?
We strive to create a birthing environment that is comfortable for the client and support team members. Our birthing suites are spacious enough to accommodate partners, relatives, doulas, and friends, as permitted. We offer a cozy family room- equipped with a pull-out sofa, refrigerator, microwave, and toys- where support team members can relax if the laboring client desires more space or privacy. Children are welcome at BBC, as long as an adult is available to look after them. However, during Covid-19, restricted number of support members (no children) must stay in the birthing suite at all times and adhere to the regulations of the birth center in precautions for the safety of mom, her support team and the staff. The family room is not available for use during Covid-19. For updates on Covid-19 changes, please attend our weekly sessions.
Is water birth available?
Yes! Many clients find that immersion in water promotes relaxation and reduces pain during labor and delivery. Some studies indicate that hydrotherapy (use of water) may also help to lower blood pressure, facilitate labor progress, and reduce the likelihood of perineal tears. Laboring in the tub is a safe option for many clients, though your midwife will need to help you determine whether water birth is right for you.
How are clients monitored at BBC? What equipment and medications are used? What kind of postpartum care is offered?
During labor, we check the client's vital signs routinely. We also use a doppler to monitor the fetal heart rate. This unobtrusive method of fetal monitoring is proven to be effective, and (unlike continuous electronic fetal monitoring in the hospital) does not restrict the laboring client's ability to move freely. We are able to offer intravenous fluids and some medications, and use of IVs if indicated. Our clients are encouraged to eat and drink during labor.
We do not offer epidural anesthesia or labor augmentation. We do use medications to provide GBS prophylaxis, facilitate the delivery of the placenta, reduce postpartum bleeding, and suture lacerations under a local anesthetic. We also offer nitrous oxide, which can be used for relaxation and pain management during non-Covid conditions. We have the required equipment to provide supplemental oxygen and perform suctioning. However, these interventions are used only as needed.
In the absence of complications, we immediately place newborns skin-to-skin on the client's chest to promote bonding. Clients and newborns usually remain skin-to-skin until the first feeding is complete or as long as desired. All routine procedures (such as monitoring vital signs) are performed without interrupting skin-to-skin contact.
Our midwives will conduct a thorough newborn exam and administer the Vitamin K shot and erythromycin eye ointment. In non-Covid conditions, within 24-48 hours of birth, a midwife will visit you and your baby at home in order to conduct additional assessments, provide infant feeding support, and complete routine blood tests and a newborn hearing screen. In lieu of a home visit, arrangements will be made to complete testing and followup to check on mom and baby. Clients are advised to see their pediatrician by the third day postpartum for additional routine newborn care.
All clients are encouraged to see our staff lactation consultants during the postpartum period. All clients are welcome to schedule postpartum office visits on an as-needed basis, and are asked to return for a routine assessment at 5 - 6 weeks postpartum. Our midwives also offer gynecological care and family planning services.
What if a complication emerges during my pregnancy or labor?
Healthy, low-risk clients are able to birth in our comfortable, private, home-like birthing suites. Occasionally, our midwives, Midwife Director or consulting physicians determine that a hospital birth would be safer for an individual client or baby. This determination, together with shared-decision making, may be made during the course of prenatal care, or while the client is in labor. We assess each client's risk status at regular intervals throughout the pregnancy. If a risk factor is identified, your midwife will talk with you about recommended hospital-based midwifery and physician practices.
Do I need to choose a midwife or OB/GYN?
As a BBC or Jazz client, you will be seen at either location of your choice by a member of the Brooklyn Midwifery Group. Clients meet staff midwives during the course of their prenatal care. When you go into labor, a team at each location of a senior midwife and junior midwife will be on call to triage your labor and admit you to the birth center when you are in active labor.
Our midwives will be your primary providers during your pregnancy. However, our consulting physicians review clients' charts and advise the midwives in best practices.
Do I need to find a doula? What about a childbirth education class?
You are encouraged to choose a doula (a person who can support you during labor and delivery). Feel free to browse our list of recommended doulas.
We find that clients who attend a childbirth education class are more confident and comfortable during labor. This is especially important for clients planning an unmedicated birth. Therefore, all BBC clients are required to attend a childbirth education class. Feel free to browse our list of recommended childbirth education classes.
Do you accept insurance?
Yes, we accept most major insurance plans, including Medicaid! Please see the Insurance section of this website for more information.
How can I make an appointment?
If you are interested in having your baby at Brooklyn Birthing Center, please click here to sign up for an orientation.
If you are newly pregnant and have not been seen by a provider, or if you are not pregnant and wish to schedule a GYN visit, please call our office at 718-336-4119.
Confidentiality and Medical Records
All your medical records are considered confidential information. Click here to view our full privacy statement.
BBC seeks to be a diverse and inclusive environment that is welcoming & accessible to each one of our clients and their families. We strive to provide culturally competent care that addresses health disparities and recognizes all of the experiences that affect and enrich each person's life. We believe that Black Lives Matter and support the Reproductive Justice and Birth Justice movements. We welcome immigrants regardless of documentation status. We endeavor to meet the needs of our clients with disabilities. We want to provide affirming care to clients of all genders and sexual orientations. We try to make our practice accessible as possible to begin with, but we invite you to share your feedback about anything more we can do to meet your needs.