Providence offers virtual pre-natal classes

MEDFORD, Ore. — Most pre-natal education classes are cancelled with the pandemic, but at Providence Medical Center in Medford, classes are continuing on.

“They were like ‘we’re not doing anything, what is your suggestion?’ so Isaid, ‘how about online and I’ll be your guinea pig,” said birthing educator, Tracy Hanson. Hanson has been in practice for over 20 years. She wanted to make sure first-time parents could still access pre-natal classes during the pandemic, so she moved the program at Providence in Medford online.

“She could’ve just offered pre-recorded videos, but the whole interaction of it was really awesome, we could ask questions and he could make funny comments,” said Sam and Crystal Blackmore are an expecting couple, due this October.

They took Hanson’s pre-natal education class at a time when so many other parts of society are in flux.

“I feel less anxious, I feel like we had the class, thinking through what it would’ve been like without the class would have been stressful,” said Sam Blackmore.

“There’s squats and exercises and I really feel I can put into play what she’s taught us,” said Crystal Blackmore.

Hanson had to heavily modify her usual 8 hour long classes, into 2 and half hour virtual sessions.

Hanson says the classes are taking off, especially with expectant Millennials.

Providence says there are 3 times the number of participants in the pre-natal courses now that they’ve gone digital, with many participants registering out of state and from non-providence clinics.

“I would just encourage, you know, when people are thinking about or trying to weigh ‘is it worth the money or not, or what have you, is to think what in life would you do for the first time without some education around?” said Hanson.

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Mariah Mills
NBC5 News reporter Mariah Mills is a Medford native. She graduated from the University of Oregon with a Bachelor's Degree in journalism. She also minored in sociology. In school, she covered Oregon athletics for the student-run television station, Duck TV. When she's not reporting, she’s reading, hiking and rooting for her favorite teams, the Seattle Seahawks and the Oregon Ducks.
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