'I didn't think I could have a baby': Toronto pregnancy clinic supports women with disabilities


Manage episode 230748644 series 2434987
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Christine Lumilan wasn't sure she'd ever become a mother. The Toronto woman knew that having cerebral palsy, diabetes and polycystic ovaries could make pregnancy challenging. When she unexpectedly found herself pregnant, the 39-year-old woman turned to a unique clinic, and doctor to help her through her pregnancy and the birth of her son, Dawson. The Accessible Care Pregnancy Clinic and Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre has exam rooms and a birthing unit that are wheelchair accessible, as well as chairs, scales and beds that accommodate a variety of disabilities. They also coordinate specialists appointments to ensure there's a continuity in care for patients with more complicated care. But as Dr. Anne Berndl, the specialist who runs the clinic explains, the clinic is also helping women overcome another hurdle when it comes to giving birth -- attitudes from people -- even healthcare workers --- who still believe that disability is a barrier to giving birth and parenting.

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