Nevada’s growth can be attributed in part to the people moving into the state, but more than 35,000 new Nevadans are born here every year. As Las Vegas is the most populated city in Nevada, the majority of these births occur in Southern Nevada.
According to the Center for Disease Controls, Nevada has sobering statistics relative to women’s health care. The state has one of the highest medically uninsured populations and higher teen pregnancy rates. Women in Nevada have less access to prenatal care and have a greater chance of delivering a pre-term baby or having a cesarean section. All of these factors make the need for a high-risk obstetrician or maternal fetal specialist necessary.
Women who benefit from a maternal fetal specialist include those who have a chronic condition such as diabetes, high blood pressure, or suffer from autoimmune diseases such as lupus and multiple sclerosis. In addition, women over the age of 35 years, or women carrying more than one baby, benefit from the additional expertise that a perinatologist can provide.
“A referral to a perinatologist by an obstetrician shouldn’t frighten a woman,” said Joseph Adashek, medical director for Desert Perinatal Associates, the state’s largest maternal fetal medicine practice. “t should provide her comfort knowing she will be treated with extra special care to ensure both her health and that of her baby or babies.”
At each of Desert Perinatal Associates’ three offices, women requiring specialized care enjoy it with an entire team at their disposal and the most state-of-the-art capabilities from chorionic villus sampling and fetal echocardiography to 4-D ultrasound.
“Our approach to care means we address the physical, emotional and spiritual aspects of the patient,” said Dr. Paul Wilkes, co-founder of Desert Perinatal Associates. “Not only does the patient have access to genetic counselors, nationally registered sonographers, nurse practitioners and physician assistants, but she does so in a homelike atmosphere.”
Because the nature of the specialty means that outcomes are not always ideal, great pains are in place to provide mental health support. Fortunately, more often than not, the seven specialists of Desert Perinatal Associates are able to mitigate challenges early on and both mom and baby benefit.
“Its not enough to have advanced equipment,” Wilkes said. “You have to provide the woman and her family old-fashioned comfort during what can be a stressful time. That’s where healing really begins.”
Despite the specialists hailing from some of the world’s most respected medical training programs, the goal is always very clear to each of them.
“When patients need our help, we create a partnership,” Adashek said. “And we never, ever forget that relationship.”
For more information, visit www.desertperinatalassociates.com or Society for Maternal Fetal Medicine at www.smfm.org.