Certified Nurse Midwife Kathy Watkins and her OB-GYN physician partners provide respectful, mindful care for pregnant women and families. Their practice focuses on hospital-based deliveries at St. Luke’s Nampa.
Midwives are registered nurses and independent practitioners who are credentialled to attend women in labor at the hospital. Physician consultation and support for mom and baby are always available.
A midwife is credentialled to care for a woman in labor who chooses an epidural. They can also care for women having a Caesarean section in the antenatal period — and assist the doctor at the C-section.
Certified Nurse midwives are regulated by the Idaho State Board of Nursing, as Advanced Practice Registered Nurses, and can write prescriptions.
Midwives work with doulas and other birth workers to support the pregnant woman in her pregnancy, labor, and postpartum.
About Kathy Watkins
Kathy Watkins is a passionate advocate for skin-to-skin bonding between a mom and baby in “the golden hour” after birth. Skin-to-skin contact “enhances neonatal outcomes, lengthens breastfeeding, decreases postpartum depression, allows babies enhanced immunity, and engages dads and siblings in the family bonding experience,” she says.
As a certified nurse midwife based at the St. Luke’s Nampa hospital, Watkins relies on years of training and experience to help her patients develop personalized birth plans. She earned an undergraduate degree in nursing from the University of Saskatchewan and a master’s degree in Nursing with a Midwifery Specialty, University of Utah. She completed fellowships at Duke University and St. Luke’s Health System and has worked at clinics and hospitals in Idaho and other states.
Watkins enjoys working with a team of Saltzer Health OB-GYNs and clinicians in a hospital setting. The St. Luke’s Nampa hospital is uniquely designed to provide a positive family-centered experience with large rooms incorporating tubs, showers, laboring beds, equipment, and needed support for moms and newborns. All of the neonatal care can occur in a single room, which keeps the mom and baby together and improves outcomes, she says. Continuity and bonding are heightened in this environment, says Watkins.
An ardent supporter of breastfeeding, she works closely with the hospital lactation team to help both moms and babies. “Not every baby knows how to breastfeed,” she said. “It’s very normal that babies and moms need support, assistance and guidance from professionals.”
Watkins believes that teamwork and communication are fundamental to the care provided by Saltzer Health providers for new moms, babies and families. She is proud to collaborate with OB-GYNs, out of hospital midwives, doulas and other birth workers.
“I love what I do,” she says. “Our team loves to work together.”
The Healthcare Podcast – Midwifery with Kathy Watkins – Listen Now
Mindful Birth Podcast – Midwifery Care in Hospital Birth and Family-Centered Cesarean Birth – Listen Now