February Cosmetic Special!

February 2024 Special

Maternity Leave

It is a joy to care for you during your pregnancy.  We know that as you get closer to delivery, lots of questions often come up regarding maternity leave.  As your OBGYN provider, we are involved in completing paperwork for your employer about your leave.  It’s important to help you understand the process and expectations regarding leave because it is often confusing or there is mixed information.

How much medical leave will I be given when I have a baby?  Recovering from childbirth takes some time.  Medical leave paperwork asks your provider to determine how much time your need to be medically out of work.  The standard recovery time from a vaginal birth is 6 weeks and for a c-section, it’s 8 weeks.  We know that you want to spend more time with your little one than 6-8 weeks which is why many employers cover additional leave time through the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) or Paid Family Medical Leave (PFML).  However, from a disability perspective, we will complete medical forms with 6 weeks for a vaginal birth and 8 weeks for a c-section.

My employer offers up to 12 weeks of paid medical leave.  Can Bedford Commons OBGYN complete my form to allow for 12 weeks of paid medical leave?  Honestly, we want you to be home with your baby as long as possible.  However, when we are completing these forms, we need to actively answer the question of how long do you need to be “medically incapacitated”, meaning home to recuperate from having your baby.  Unless there are medical complications with your recovery after your baby is born, we need to be consistent in our medical leave requests, regardless of how much time an employer may offer.  It is not uncommon that new parents are told that if the doctor allows it, additional time will be given.  That is true if there is a medical indication for extended leave but that is quite uncommon.

How is bonding time different?  The State of Massachusetts offers 12 weeks to bond with a child, regardless of parents’ gender.  New Hampshire PFL allows for up to 8 weeks of bonding time in the first 12 months of having a child.  Unlike in Massachusetts where it is a state benefit, in New Hampshire PFL is optional so you may or may not have access to the benefits.  Employers can opt in for New Hampshire PFL or individual employees can opt in.  In both New Hampshire and Massachusetts, bonding time is different than the medical leave discussed above.  Bonding time is completed specifically by the employee (you) and does not require our office to complete any paperwork.  The paperwork must be filed after the medical leave portion is filed.  

Please know that we know adjusting to a new baby and sleepless nights are tricky.  We also know that precious time with your little one is priceless.  Talk to your employer about if you qualify for FMLA leave (up to 12 weeks total including the 6-8 weeks of medical leave) to allow for some extension of your leave.

PHONE OUTAGE

Our phone platform is currently experiencing a system wide outage. If you need to reach us with an urgent matter, you can text us at 603-668-4646. As a reminder, texting is not HIPAA compliant, please do not send medical information.

If you are experiencing a medical emergency, please call 911 immediately.

Please be patient as we return your messages.

We’re coming to Londonderry, NH June 2023!

We are excited to announce that we will be coming to Londonderry, NH this June!  Our office address will be located at 50 Michels Way in Londonderry.  It’s just behind the Market Basket plaza and close to 603 Brewery.  This will be a full service office with ultrasound available too!  If you’d like to schedule an appointment in our Londonderry office, please call us at 603-668-8400.

You can also see us at our offices at Bedford, Windham and Manchester.

Masking Update – March 2023

As of Monday, March 20, 2023 we are pleased to share that universal masking is no longer required at all of our office locations.

In September 2022, the CDC stated that healthcare facilities may choose not to require universal source control when the community level is low and community transmission is not high and maintains those level designations for two weeks or longer. We have met these criteria and decided to no longer require universal mask use within our healthcare settings. Please note that we will continue to provide masks at our facilities, for all who need or want to wear them. We will continue to monitor CDC weekly county community levels, transmission levels as well as any regulatory mandates to guide decision making.

Even with this change, masks will still be required for individuals with respiratory symptoms or symptoms of COVID-19.

Early Pregnancy Loss – what happens to my baby after a D&C procedure

To Patients and Families Experiencing an Early Pregnancy Loss:

We understand that this is a difficult time for you and your family and that you may have some questions regarding the handling of your babies’ remains. It is our desire to care for your baby with dignity and respect; therefore, we would like you to take some time to consider two options available to you for final disposition.

Private Arrangements: You may make private arrangements for cremation or burial – regardless of the gestational age at the time of pregnancy loss. Although the cost associated with burial will vary by cemetery, many funeral homes do not charge for cremation or burial preparations for early pregnancy loss. Please make any private arrangements within two weeks and notify the funeral home of your choice. You also need to notify our staff here at the Elliot. You can email AMorneau@elliot-hs.org or RBelt@elliot-hs.org and we can help to ensure that your babies’ remains are prepared for release. Please be aware that if you do not desire a private arrangement, all remains will be placed in the Elliot Hospital Memory Garden.

Elliot Hospital Memory Garden: The Memory Garden is located on the Elliot Hospital campus and is the final resting place of stillborn and early loss babies. Remains are cremated collectively and interred in the Memory Garden at a yearly memorial service. The Memory Garden is home to the Angel of Hope Statue and is a place where families can come to remember and honor their babies privately. If you elect this option, the cremation is completed at no cost to you.

If you choose the Memory Garden, please know that we have an annual Angel of Hope Candlelight Vigil on December 6th at 7PM in the garden. The Memory Garden Interment Ceremony and Memorial Service is on the Sunday before Memorial Day at 2PM. We would love to have you join us. For more information click here: Elliot Memory Garden information.  

If you have any questions about these options, please contact the bereavement line voicemail at (603)663-3396. Leave your name and number and we will return your call.

We are so sorry for your loss.

Sincerely,

Amanda Morneau, BSN, RNC-EFM, CCE
Perinatal Loss Coordinator
Elliot Hospital
AMorneau@elliot-hs.org

DaNae Belt, BSN RNC-OB, RNC-MNN, C-EFM
Clinical Nurse Manager
Labor and Delivery
Elliot Hospital
RBelt@elliot-hs.org

 

The following is a list of area funeral homes that provide free or low cost cremation for infants, stillborn babies and early pregnancy loss. This is not a comprehensive list. Please contact the funeral home of your choice directly to discuss options.

  • Phaneuf Funeral Homes & Cremation, Manchester NH (603) 625-5777
  • Lambert Funeral Home & Crematory, Manchester NH (603) 625-6951
  • Cremation Society of New Hampshire, Manchester NH (603) 622-1800
  • Advantage Funeral & Cremation Services, Nashua NH (603) 521-8424
  • Petit-Ronan Funeral Home, Pembroke NH (603) 485-9573
  • Still Oaks Funeral & Memorial Home, Epsom NH (603) 798-3050
  • Anctil-Rochette & Son Funeral Home, Nashua NH (603) 883-3041

Looking for a new OBGYN provider in Bedford?

We are excited that you are considering Bedford Commons OBGYN for your healthcare.  We know it can be difficult to change providers or meet someone new.  To select the provider who is right for you, check out our provider videos on our website.  All of our providers are currently accepting new patients.

When you are ready to set up an appointment, you can schedule most appointments using our online scheduling or by talking with a patient care specialist by calling  603-668-8400.  If you’re newly pregnant or need immediate care, please be sure to call us.

Although having your records isn’t required to make an appointment, it can be very helpful to have a copy of your last GYN office visit, your last pap test, and any routine labs that you have had within the last year.  To facilitate this process, complete an online medical records release for your previous healthcare provider.  Click here to complete the medical records release.

Bedford Commons OBGYN accepts most major health insurance plans.  However, it is important for you to verify whether we accept your specific health plan at the time you schedule an appointment.  We may require a referral for certain plans.  Please note that we do not currently accept the Anthem BCBS Pathways Plan from the New Hampshire Marketplace.

We have offices in Bedford, Windham, Manchester, and soon will open a location in Londonderry, NH!  In addition, we are anticipating our Derry location to reopen in Summer 2023!  We look forward to seeing you at a location that’s convenient for you.

If you have questions about becoming a new patient, please feel free to give us a call 603-668-8400.  We would love to meet you!

COVID19 Vaccine Considerations for Pregnant or Breastfeeding Women

Many of our patients have been asking about the safety and effectiveness of the COVID19 vaccine in pregnancy and breastfeeding.  Vaccination is the best way to reduce the risks of COVID-19 infection and COVID-related complications for both you and your baby.  Now that the vaccine has been out since December 2020, we have a lot more information about the vaccine for pregnant and breastfeeding women.  We encourage all of our pregnant and breastfeeding patients to stay up to date on their COVID-19 vaccinations including the newly released omicron booster.

Both the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) and the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine (SMFM) recommend that pregnant and breastfeeding people be vaccinated against COVID19.

Although pregnant or lactating women were not included in the COVID19 vaccine clinical trials, hundreds of thousands of pregnant people have been vaccinated and no unexpected pregnancy or fetal problems have occurred.  There have been no reports of any increased risk of pregnancy loss, growth problems, or birth defects.

We know that about 1 to 3 in 1,000 pregnant women with COVID19 will develop severe illness.  Compared to those who aren’t pregnant, pregnant women infected by COVID19 with symptoms are 3 times more likely to need ICU care, 2 to 3 times more likely to need advanced life support, and have a 70% increased risk of death.  According to a September 29, 2021 urgent health advisory from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), there have been more than 125,000 confirmed cases of COVID19 in pregnant people including more than 22,000 hospitalizations and 161 deaths.  To reduce these risk, the COVID19 vaccine is recommended.  See the full CDC health advisory here.  

The best way to prevent complications from COVID-19 is vaccination and continue to be up to date on your vaccination series.  We strongly recommend that our pregnant and breastfeeding patients get the COVID19 vaccinationPregnancy is not an indication for a COVID19 vaccine waiver.  

If you have questions about the vaccine, please talk to your provider at your next visit.