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Family Health Education

Berkshire Medical Center has many programs to help you prepare to bring a new baby into the world and into your home. Taught by certified childbirth instructors, our education programs are designed to help you make informed choices about your delivery, caring for yourself and caring for your newborn.

Successful Breastfeeding - This one session class will provide you with information on the benefits of breastfeeding, things you can do to get ready, tips for getting off to a good start, ways mom's partner can help, and suggestions for breastfeeding when returning to work. Attendance is recommended for you and your partner between the 4th and 7th month of pregnancy.

Fee: $25.00 per couple (includes book)

Monday evenings, 6 - 8:30 PM

Prepared Childbirth Series - This four or seven week series will provide you with information on what you can expect during the labor and delivery process, breathing and relaxation techniques, pain management options, and how to care for yourself and infant after delivery.

Fee: $85.00 per couple* - see insurance information below. 

Offered Sunday or Wednesday evenings.

Prepared Childbirth Refresher - If you participated in a full childbirth series during a previous pregnancy, you will find the refresher series a helpful review. This single session class focuses on breathing and relaxation techniques, information on changes in the management of labor and delivery since the birth of your last baby, and ways to prepare children at home for the new arrival.

Fee: $35.00 per couple*

Saturdays from 1:00 to 4:00 pm, offered every other month.

Private Class Option for Childbirth Series - If you find your work or your lifestyle prevents you from attending one of the scheduled childbirth series, there is an option for a private childbirth class. Based on the availability of an instructor, you can schedule the day and time of the class at your convenience. There are two 2-hour sessions.

Fee: $200.00 per couple (Many insurance companies will reimburse part of the fee)

Big Brother/Big Sister Class - Preparing your older child for the arrival of a new baby can help ease anxiety he or she may be feeling about becoming a big brother or big sister. This one class session is geared for children three years and older. The class includes a tour of the Mother-Baby Unit and the Nursery.

Fee: $15.00 per child ($25 maximum)                   

Sunday evenings, 4:30-6:00 pm - Offered every other month. Call us for the next available class.

Infant/Child CPR - This one session class will provide you with the basic CPR techniques for infants and young children. General first aid is also included.

 Fee: $35.00 per couple, $25.00 per person

Monday evenings offered every other month - call for schedule.

Baby and Me - When was the last time you made an appointment to have fun? Children learn and explore their world through play. This on-going playgroup offers families opportunities for giving and receiving support and information from peers, while participating in fun, developmentally appropriate activities with their children. Includes occasional mini-presentations on selected topics of interest by guest speakers, as well as a healthy snack.

 Fee: $42 for a six-week series. 

Infants & Toddlers (1-24 months) on Wednesday mornings. 9:30 – 11:00 AM

Itsy Bitsy Yoga  - This four week series is for babies 8 weeks old to crawling age, and their parent(s). Parents learn to help unfold their baby's motor skills, sleep better, feel happier and digest with ease. It is a wonderful way to bond with your baby, give and receive support, and meet other like-minded parents in your community.

Fee: $40.00 per infant/parent dyad.

Friday afternoons, 2-3 pm at Berkshire Medical Center

Newborn 101 - In this single session class you will learn a variety of strategies to help your baby cry less and sleep better at night,  including swaddling, calming, and positioning. Based on the 5 “S”s by Dr. Harvey Karp. Other topics include infant development, the infant’s needs for attachment and responsiveness, and what babies think and understand in the first year of life.

Fee:  $35.00/couple

Wednesdays 6:00 – 8:00 PM  Offered quarterly, call for schedule.

For more information about these programs, or to register, please call BMC's Childbirth Education Office at 413-447-2400 or contact our Program Director via e-mail:kcharbonneau@bhs1.org. We recommend that you register for the Prepared Childbirth Series during the fourth month of pregnancy to ensure that you are able to complete the series before your baby's birth.

*Most health insurers will reimburse for all or part of the fee for prepared childbirth classes and refresher classes, as well as breastfeeding classes. Contact your insurance company for more information. If you are on BMC HealthNet, there is no out of pocket cost for the prepared childbirth and refresher classes.



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