OSF HealthCare app aims to aid parents

Preparing for a baby isn’t easy. It’s a time of excitement and joyful planning, but it can be stressful and even a little scary.

Photo - mother laying on floor with babyWhen you have a baby on the way – or are raising children of any age, really – there are seemingly countless things you need to know. And you’ve probably got a lot of questions, too. Should you take birthing classes or parenting classes? Where are they? What is going on with my baby’s development throughout pregnancy? Is my child developing at a healthy rate? How do you know what’s important to record? What should you do during pregnancy to help promote healthy development?

What should I do throughout the rest of my child’s development?

Wow! That’s a lot, but it doesn’t have to be overwhelming. That’s why OSF HealthCare offers Circle by OSF, a smartphone application that supports parents from pregnancy all the way through parenthood, now available in the Ottawa, Illinois region.

A parent’s best friend

Brandi Duffy, a registered nurse and certified lactation specialist at OSF HealthCare Saint Elizabeth Medical Center in Ottawa, wishes the app had been around when she was pregnant with her children.

“The Circle App is really for all parents, but it’s especially great for new and expectant parents,” Duffy said. “It has a lot of resources and tools to use during pregnancy and after the baby is born. It’s very specific to you and your family. You enter the nearest OSF HealthCare hospital you utilize and you can see all the services available to you.”

Circle by OSF makes it easier to prepare for child birth and parenthood. It is a tracking tool for things like your child’s weight gain, diaper use, vaccines and feedings. It can help you track how often the baby kicks during pregnancy. It can update you on your baby’s week-by-week development inside the womb.

It serves as a library of clinically approved health and wellness information and frequently asked questions, so you can spend that precious time with your care provider having in-depth conversations about your individual concerns, and less of that time discussing standard questions. It empowers people to be more engaged with their well-being, resulting in healthier lives.

Circle by OSF provides contact information for services at your preferred OSF HealthCare facility and can help you find parenting support groups in your area.

“I think it’s very useful, especially in pregnancy and early on after birth, because there’s so much involved when having and caring for a new baby,” Duffy said. “You’re trying to keep track of all the diapers and the feedings. And you have so many questions. Well, if it’s a common question, the answer’s probably in this app. You can find providers, services or classes, like breastfeeding support.

“It helps keep things organized. Some people bring in notebooks with all this information, so I tell them to use the app on their phone and they won’t need to carry a notebook around.”

Download the app on your smartphone today from the App Store or Google Play.

About Author: Ken Harris

Ken Harris is a writing coordinator for the Marketing & Communications division of OSF HealthCare.

He has a bachelor's in journalism from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and worked as a daily newspaper reporter for four years before leaving the field and eventually finding his way to OSF HealthCare.

In his free time, Ken likes reading, fly fishing, hanging out with his dog and generally pestering his lovely, patient wife.

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Categories: Birth & Maternity