Approaches to Obstetrics

​​​Choosing a provider for pregnancy is one of the most personal decisions a woman can make. Many women select an obstetrician-gynecologist to manage their pregnancy and delivery. Others may want a midwife or family practitioner to care for them during their pregnancy. Some women may need a specialist who deals with very complicated and specific obstetric conditions.

​Whichever path you choose, UW Medicine offers a full spectrum of obstetric care with access to the most specialized services, should you need them.


These physicians undertake an extensive study of female reproductive physiology during their four years of training in the combined discipline of obstetrics and gynecology. They provide integrated medical and surgical care for women, including comprehensive obstetric care. Some providers practice both obstetrics and gynecology, while others may provide specialized gynecology care only.
Learn more about our Obstetricians >

Maternal Fetal Medicine Specialists

Dr. Cheng with patientMaternal fetal medicine specialists provide high-risk pregnancy care, including the following:
  • Diabetes care in pregnancy
  • Premature birth prevention
  • Care for multiple gestations (twins, triplets)
  • High blood pressure in pregnancy
  • Infectious disease in pregnancy, including HIV
  • Prenatal genetic counseling
  • Prenatal diagnosis
  • Management of birth defects

Midwifery Service

midwife and patient with husbandCertified Nurse-Midwives (CNMs) provide care to normal, healthy women during pregnancy, delivery and postpartum. At UW Medicine, all midwives have master’s degrees in midwifery and practice as advanced registered nurse practitioners.

CNMs care for women who would like a low-intervention birth as well as for those who need co-managed care with obstetricians. Our midwives are trained to recognize complications early and refer women to our expert obstetrics and perinatology staff if necessary.

CNMs strive to become partners in care and believe that if women are given the correct information, they can make safe and satisfying choices about pregnancy and birth
Learn more about our Midwifery Service 

Family Medicine

Family medicine physicians care for all members of a family from birth through old age. These physicians provide personalized up-to-date obstetric and prenatal care. A family medicine physician will also continue to care for the new baby and the mother after delivery.

Family medicine practitioners emphasize healthy lifestyles, preventive care, and active patient involvement in health-care decisions. These physicians collaborate with specialists if patients have more complicated health needs.