Specialized Maternity Care

TMC offers the highest level of care for mom’s and newborns, with skilled nurses, technicians and physicians ready to take care of the expected and the unexpected. Below you will find definitions of some of the specialized roles within TMC’s Maternity Services.

A perinatologist is an obstetrical specialist concerned with the care of the mother and fetus at higher-than-normal risk for complications. 

Don't let that scare you  - perninatologists offer the best and most expert care available while you are pregnant.

What kind of training do Perionatologists have?

Perinatologists are medical doctors who have had:

•    At least four years of medical school

•    Three years in a  residency program in obstetrics/gynecology and achieve board certification, by passing the written and oral examinations administered by the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology

•    Three years in a fellowship program in perinatology, maternal-fetal medicine, or high-risk obstetrics Certification from the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology in the subspecialty of maternal-fetal medicine

Neonatologists – doctors who care for any baby who needs assistance in TMC’s nationally renowned Newborn Intensive Care Unit or NICU.

Although your pediatrician can solve most health problems of newborns, a neonatologist is trained specifically to handle the most complex and high-risk situations. If your newborn is premature, or has a serious illness a neonatologist may assist at the time of delivery and in the newborn care of your baby. If a problem is identified before your baby is born, a neonatologist may become involved to consult with your obstetrician in your baby’s care during your pregnancy. Neonatologists have the special training required to evaluate and treat newborns’ medical problems. In addition, neonatologists use equipment that is designed specifically for the tiniest patients.

What kind of training do Neonatologists have?

Neonatologists are medical doctors who have had:

•    At least four years of medical school

•    Three years of residency training in general pediatrics

•    Three years of additional training in newborn intensive care

•    Certification from the American Board of Pediatrics and by the Sub-board of Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine

Anesthesia Services

Concerns about controlling your pain while in labor? TMC has Labor & Delivery anesthesiologists solely dedicated to mothers in labor.  Why is this so important?  Many types of medication can ease pain during labor and delivery. Every woman's labor is unique. The amount of pain a woman feels during labor may differ from that felt by another woman. Pain depends on many factors, such as the size and position of the baby and the strength of contractions. Some women take classes to learn breathing and relaxation techniques to help cope with pain during childbirth. Others may find it helpful to use these techniques along with pain medications. Some women need little or no pain relief, and others find that pain relief gives them better control over their labor and delivery. Work with your health care team to make the best decision for you and your baby.


Midwives are primary health care providers to women throughout the lifespan. Midwives perform physical exams, prescribe medications including contraceptive methods, order laboratory tests as needed, provide prenatal care, gynecological care, labor and birth care, as well as health education and counseling to women of all ages.

The American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM) is the professional association that represents certified nurse-midwives (CNMs) and certified midwives (CMs). Certified nurse-midwives are registered nurses who have graduated from a nurse-midwifery education program accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Midwifery Education (ACME)  and have passed a national certification examination to receive the professional designation of certified nurse-midwife. 

Clients of El Rio Congress Midwives give birth at Tucson Medical Center in updated birthing rooms or at the Birth & Women's Health Center. The El Rio Certified Nurse-Midwives are specialists in normal childbirth. They are Registered Nurses who have completed an accredited university program in Nurse-Midwifery and are certified by the American College of Nurse-Midwives and licensed in the State of Arizona. The El Rio CNM's provide regular checks of mother and baby  including office visits, sonograms, laboratory tests and prescriptions for vitamins and medications, if needed. When a woman is admitted to TMC in labor, the CNM stays with her as much as needed, to provide support and guidance throughout the labor and birth process.

More than 16,000 babies have been born with El Rio midwives at TMC.