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Birth Center Signs Lease For A New Space In Springfield

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Our Community Birth Center
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There are currently no free-standing birthing facilities operating in Lane County. But that is about to change. A non-profit midwifery birth center recently found a new space to call home.

After months of searching, the midwives and parent advocates of Our Community Birth Center found what they were looking for. They signed the lease on a former office building near Island Park in Springfield. Soon it will be converted into a “comforting clinic space.”

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Credit AlexAnn Westlake
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Nurse Midwife AlexAnn Westlake tends to a newborn.

AlexAnn Westlake is a certified nurse midwife and Executive Director of the center. She said families and pregnant people are eager to sign up for care.

“Birth center services are essential for providing birthing options, equitable access to care,” she said. “And also research shows birth centers lower the cost of health care and improve outcomes including having fewer unnecessary C-sections and fewer pre-term births.”  

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Credit Our Community Birth Center
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Front of the building about to be remodeled into a comforting space for families and pregnant people. 

Westlake said the COVID-19 pandemic has intensified the need for community birth options.

“So that people can conserve those hospital resources, reduce their exposure to COVID by reducing the number of people they’re exposed to during their pregnancy and birth process,” said Westlake. “So Our Community Birth Center is happy to get open soon.”

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Credit Our Community Birth Center
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Community room in the new space in Springfield leased by Our Community Birth Center

Westlake said they continue to raise funds to cover remodeling and start up costs. There are currently no birth centers operating in Lane, Douglas or Coos counties. But Westlake said that’s about to change-- they expect to open their doors by the end of the year.

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Credit Our Community Birth Center
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This newborn baby's parents advocate for Our Community Birth Center.              

An event called “Build Up the Birth Center” will be held on May 6th with a virtual tour of the new space and opportunities to pledge support.  

Tiffany joined the KLCC News team in 2007. She studied journalism at the University of Missouri-Columbia and has worked in a variety of media including television and daily print news. For KLCC, Tiffany reports on health care, social justice and local/regional news. She has won awards from Oregon Associated Press, PRNDI, and Education Writers Association.
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