First patient gives birth in water at Abbott Northwestern Hospital

Aimee Blomberg and Kaelyn Grace Blomberg rested in a cushiony, inflatable tub of warm water in their room at Abbott Northwestern Hospital.

Blomberg family poses for a portrait.

The Blomberg Family

Kaelyn was born on September 15, 2011 at 3:37 p.m. Aimee lifted the newborn out of the water and into her comforting embrace.

"I can’t imagine what it would have been like without the water," said Aimee. "It was so relaxing and a huge pain management tool."

"I had no idea what it would be like, but the water definitely made labor a lot easier for her," said Sam Blomberg, who did not get into the tub but was with his wife throughout the process.

Abbott Northwestern is the first hospital within Allina Hospitals & Clinics to offer the water birth option. Abbott Northwestern has the highest birth volume in the region, delivering 4,000 babies each year.

"We have a reputation for excellent care, and we continue to support all childbirth experiences," said Debbie Biffle, RN, labor and delivery nurse, who is leading the water birth initiative at Abbott Northwestern.

Abbott Northwestern requires women to meet certain criteria to use the water birth option. They also must sign consent forms that are provided to physicians and midwives who practice at Abbott Northwestern.

The Blombergs, who are in their early twenties, live in Coon Rapids. Kaelyn is their first child. They chose to give birth at Abbott Northwestern specifically because of the birthing tubs.

"When my midwife said the tubs were available at Abbott Northwestern, I knew I wanted to deliver there even though there were other hospitals closer to where I lived," said Aimee.