Electronic fetal monitoring technology helps ensure baby's well-being

Thanks to generous support of donors, expectant mothers have extra assurance of delivering a healthy baby.

Fundraising events hosted by Ascension River District Hospital supported the purchase of seven Electronic Fetal Monitoring (EFM) systems. Obstetricians/Gynecologists use EFMs to assess the well-being of a baby in the uterus. The system can be used as needed any time during pregnancy or continuously during labor to ensure normal delivery of a healthy baby.

The EFM system isn’t just for clinical management—it also provides reassurance that the pregnancy is progressing well and the baby is safe. The system provides heartbeat readings, follows uterus contraction patterns and records other patient vital stats. This information helps determine if the baby is healthy or in distress, if the mother’s labor pattern is adequate, and if a cesarean section is necessary.

The EFM system replaces older electronic equipment that is not compatible with electronic medical record systems.

Many Ascension River District Hospital physicians also work with doctors at Ascension St. John Hospital. It is beneficial to have electronic EFM records in case a patient has a complication and needs to be transferred to the other hospital where specialty services are available. The system ensures patient safety and record continuity.

Another advantage is that doctors have the capability to access EFM data remotely on their smartphones. This allows them to obtain a continual heart rate reading and monitor a baby’s safety anywhere, anytime.