North/Emergency Entrance of St. David's North Austin Medical Center




—   MUCH MORE THAN: "Just Breathing & Relaxation!"   —

—   AND CERTAINLY NOT JUST ABOUT: "Natural Childbirth!"   —




Frequently Asked Questions
What is Lamaze and how does it work?

Lamaze is recognized worldwide as THE standard of excellence in childbirth education. Hospitals and physicians in the Greater Austin Area overwhelmingly recommend that couples prepare for birth; Lamaze is the preferred course of instruction. It combines education with focused breathing, relaxation, and other supportive techniques (e.g., positioning, massage, effleurage) that allow laboring women to maintain greater control, lessen their discomfort, develop fewer complications requiring intervention, and more fully enjoy the wondrous event (as do their birth partners).

Does Lamaze mean "natural childbirth" (i.e., no medication)?

Lamaze means "prepared" childbirth and prepares women for all types of birth, medicated and unmedicated. Each birth option is presented so well-informed decisions can be made by the laboring woman, her birth partner, and the medical professionals aiding the birth. The classes are balanced in their presentation; no dogmas or philosophies are stressed.

Who presents the Lamaze classes?

A private professional service, "The Childbearing Years, Inc." has been presenting Lamaze childbirth education and parenting classes in Central Texas since 1982. Some 23,000 couples have taken our courses at area hospitals, clinics, and doctors' offices.

We are the contract service provider for St. David's North Austin Medical Center—and have been for over 16 years.

Who is in charge of the program?

The founder and president of The Childbearing Years, Inc. is Nola Cottom, RNC, M.S.N., CNS, LCCE, FACCE. Nola is a faculty member at The University of Texas at Austin School of Nursing, a past member of the Faculty of Lamaze International, and a Lamaze Certified Childbirth Educator in Austin since 1975.

How can a labor partner help during birth?

The labor partner is extremely important during birth and actively participates, giving the laboring woman emotional comfort, encouragement, and physical support. By preparing for birth, the partner is completely knowledgeable, able to help in decision-making, and forms exceptionally strong bonds with mother and baby.

At what point in pregnancy should the Lamaze course/seminar be taken?

Ideally, the course or seminar should be attended late in pregnancy, finishing about one to two months before the due date—that way the information and training are still fresh in the minds of both the laboring mother and her birth partner when the time comes. We recommend that ladies enroll fairly early in pregnancy since some classes fill well in advance.

How do I get more information, register, and pay?

Class descriptions, tuition, and class dates can be viewed by clicking on the photo of St. David's North Austin Medical Center's above.

Registration is easy: Just call The Childbearing Years at 512/263-5588 and you can do everything over the phone in less than two minutes with no paperwork!  When you enroll, you're welcome to use a Visa, MasterCard, Discover, or American Express credit or debit card—or you can pay by check or money order by mail.

A letter of confirmation for each class will be immediately emailed to you; then a hard copy of each confirmation letter will be mailed to you along with a copy of your credit or debit card transaction slip. Confirmation letters affirm the date(s), times, and specific site of your class; include a map of the location of St. David's North Austin Medical Center; ask you to enter through the North/Emergency Entrance; inform you what to bring with you; and give directions on how to find your classroom. (All classes are presented on the second floor of the main area of the hospital and NOT in the Women's Center.)

Does insurance cover the cost of childbirth and parenting classes?

Some health care policies do cover the tuition of taking Lamaze and other classes for expectant parents. By calling the Customer Service number on the back of your health insurance card to ask if you have benefits for Childbirth & Parenting Education, you may find that you can file for reimbursement of the tuition you paid "The Childbearing Years." Generally, the letter of confirmation we provide and a copy of your credit/debit card transaction slip (or check/money order) will suffice. However, if you're asked for something more detailed, just call our office (512/263-5588) and we'll prepare the documentation the health insurance provider requests.

What is the refund policy?

For Lamaze, Newborn Care, and Breastfeeding Classes, your tuition will be fully refunded if you notify us at least 24 hours prior to the start of class; for Infant/Child CPR Classes, we ask that you contact us at least 72 hours before class time.

What is the policy for attending make-up classes?

Depending on availability, you're welcome to reschedule or make up a class with another group if you call our office at 512/263-5588 within the same time period required for receiving a refund when withdrawing (see the above answer). There is no extra charge.

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