The UMC Family Birth Center and Family Care Unit has been designated a Level IV maternal care facility, the highest level of care available. The Maternal Designation followed a site visit conducted by the Texas EMS Trauma and Acute Care Foundation (TETAF) with final designation presented through the Texas Department of State Health Services.
All aspects of labor and delivery at UMC – Family Birth Center, Family Care Unit and Neonatal Intensive Care Unit – now have the highest rating available.
“This designation certifies that UMC offers the highest level of care for the most complex obstetric patients,” Dr. Edward Yeomans, a Maternal-Fetal Medicine specialist and Chairman of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center. “Achievement of Level IV Maternal Designation speaks to the expertise of our clinical staff and the processes we have in place to assure quality care and excellent patient outcomes for both the mother and the baby.”
A Level IV maternal care facility provides and demonstrates comprehensive care for pregnant and postpartum patients ranging from low-risk conditions up to and including the most complex medical, surgical and obstetrical conditions that present a high-risk of maternal morbidity or mortality.
In 2013, the Texas Legislature created levels of care designation for neonatal and maternal care in Texas hospitals. The maternal levels of care designation rule became effective on March 1, 2018 and the designation for maternal level of care is an eligibility requirement for Medicaid reimbursement beginning September 1, 2021. The intent of the legislation is to assure both neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) and maternal care birthing facilities have the resources and expertise to provide high-quality, specialized patient care that leads to the best outcomes for both mothers and babies.
To receive designation levels according to services, the hospital must demonstrate compliance to the state rules. Patient care standards must follow national evidenced-based standards. Verification surveys, such as performed by TETAF, evaluate that hospitals meet certain standards for caring for babies and mothers based upon designation level. The level of care designated by the Texas Department of State Health Services ranges from Level 1 (Basic Care) to Level IV (Comprehensive High Risk) care. Once hospital designation is achieved, the designation is current for a period of three years.
UMC joins nine other organizations in Texas to achieve Level IV Maternal Designation. The other Level IV organizations are in Austin, San Antonio, Dallas, El Paso, and Houston.
UMC Health System has developed a strong and enduring culture, adhering to the motto Service is Our Passion, our ‘why.’ This sustains UMC as the employer of choice—consistently ranking among the best places to work in Texas by the Best Companies Group – and the provider of choice – ranking among the top 10 percent of hospitals in the nation for patient experience by HealthGrades.