This story originally appeared on the In the Loop blog.
In 2012, Mayo Clinic's Center for Innovation and Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology began enrolling volunteers in an experimental program called the OB Nest Project. The program's goal: Reduce the number of prenatal visits for women with uncomplicated pregnancies by giving them equipment and education to monitor their blood pressure and the baby's heartbeat at home. This approach broke new ground in a care system that hadn't seen much change "since the telephone was invented," the Star Tribune reported at the time.
The program's lead obstetrician back then, Roger Harms, M.D., told the newspaper he initially worried patients "might panic" if they "ran into trouble with the equipment, such as the fetal monitor." But it turns out "that didn't happen." In fact, patients loved OB Nest so much that after another successful "trial run" last year, a recent Strib article reports the program will soon become part of Mayo's "routine obstetric service." Read the rest of the OB Nest article.