Creating a Positive Childbirth Experience
Unique birthing support system improves the quality of obstetric care and increases hospital customer satisfaction.
Today, many women expecting a baby want to have more choice over the methods used in the delivery. They want a positive childbirth experience that will stay with them for years, supporting the welfare of the family and the newborn baby. Providing different options and respecting the mothers’ wishes are also important factors when quality of obstetric care is assessed.
In search of mother-friendly hospitals
“In many countries, expectant mothers actively seek mother-friendly obstetric hospitals or maternity clinics able to match their individual preferences and demands. Consequently, obstetric service providers are now looking for ways to improve their customer satisfaction with enhanced clinical midwifery services and better delivery room equipment. This way, they want to provide a suitable setting for childbirth,” says Elina Kostiainen, vice chief executive officer of Relaxbirth Ltd.
All-in-one birthing support system
Relaxbirth is an innovative, award-winning Finnish MedTech company that has developed a groundbraking all-in-one birthing support system with exceptionally versatile use during different stages of the birthing process, allowing individual choice. The birthing support concept is based on the long work experience, both in Finland and abroad, of specialised nurse and midwife Eija Pessinen, founder of the company. It is commercialised by the current Relaxbirth team and a wide network of specialists.
The Relaxbirth® System consists of the patented Relaxbirth birthing support device, the Relaxbirth birthing method, plus training, services and supplies. The birthing support device is a robust yet flexible apparatus with impressive dimensions that partly resembles a recliner chair. It comes with a movable seat, a back and leaning support and many handles that are easy to grip and hold on to.
Excellent feedback from users
“Our versatile birthing support is designed to ease the birthing process. Relaxbirth is based on the female anatomy, and it brings along significant physiological and psychological benefits. For optimal use, the midwives and obstetricians trained to use Relaxbirth encourage the mothers to move, adjust their position and relax during the delivery – whatever feels most comfortable and most natural,” Kostiainen explains.
“We have received excellent feedback from the users. They say Relaxbirth helps them increase their pushing power and find the right direction to push, which makes the pushing phase very effective. The recovery is quick. They also liked being able to get relief and change their position freely. From the psychological point of view, many felt empowered ― feeling in control all the way through labour.”
What’s more, Relaxbirth significantly improves working ergonomics for doctors and midwives. This reduces the risk for musculoskeletal disorders and repetitive stress injuries that typically occur in their work.
Winner of many innovation awards
Last year, Relaxbirth won the 2012 HealthPort Innovation Competition. In addition, it was declared winner of the 2012 Red Herring Top 100 Europe and Global Awards, given to promising new companies. In 2009, the European Union Women Inventors and Innovators Network (EUWIIN) granted its first prize to Eija Pessinen.
“We are very pleased about all this positive recognition for the Relaxbirth concept and for our team’s work. In addition, winning the HealthPort Innovation Competition was a valuable additional resource for us. We have used the prize to obtain consultation services that will help us develop our business further,” Kostiainen notes.
On a global childbirth wellbeing mission
The mission of Relaxbirth is to promote wellbeing in childbirth globally. There is a big potential market for the company’s products.
“Our product has aroused a lot of interest from countries around the world, proving there is worldwide demand for it. In the coming years, we hope Relaxbirth will be used in hospitals on several continents and be a name familiar to consumers,” Kostiainen concludes.
The HealthPort Innovation Competition aimed to find clinical inventions that can be translated into commercial products and services that benefit patients. It was part of the BSHR HealthPort project, cofinanced by the Baltic Sea Region Programme 2007-2013. The HealthPort Innovation Competition was organised by Culminatum Innovation Ltd. For more information, see www.scanbalt.org.
Text: Leena Koskenlaakso