By Ashley Benkarski and Sa Cara Shaw, M.D.
NASHVILLE, TN — TriStar Centennial Women’s Hospital is home to Nashville’s first Obstetrical and Gynecological Emergency Room. For the past decade, the OB/GYN ER has offered a specialized and private approach to women’s healthcare issues with a shorter wait time than traditional emergency rooms.
The OB/GYN ER is staffed 24/7 by physicians who specialize in obstetrical and gynecological care, and they are ready to treat a wide variety of emergent issues like pain or bleeding in early pregnancy, pre-term labor, pelvic pain, breast conditions, bladder and urinary tract infections. The department also provides STD and pregnancy testing and can provide early labor assessments without admitting the patient. EMS first responders can also take patients directly to the OB/GYN ER by ambulance.
Currently, the OB/GYN ER sees about 8,000 patients a year. Dr. Sa Cara Shaw, an OB/GYN physician with Centennial Women’s Group, says she encourages her patients to learn about and know what is offered at TriStar Centennial’s OB/GYN ER. She is also encouraging conversations between women and their families focused on reducing the stigma that surrounds women’s health issues by letting women know they have a voice in their care and their pain is real.
“Unfortunately, we have been learning that there is an increase in maternal mortality in the United States, but when it comes to black women, it’s increased basically four times compared to other ethnicities,” she said.
Black women also face higher rates of maternal complications that can lead to death either during childbirth or within a year after childbirth, the CDC notes. Issues like hypertension, diabetes and high blood pressure are high contributors to maternal mortality rates, and these same diseases disproportionately affect black women. The disparity even reaches across income and education levels.
The OB/GYN ER at TriStar Centennial Women’s Hospital is designed to be a safe and reassuring place for women to come and be treated with specialized care designed specifically for women. Women who have any medical concerns at all can come to the ER to receive treatment from a women’s health specialist. The street entrance to TriStar Centennial’s OB/GYN ER is located at 2221 Murphy Ave.
To schedule an appointment with OB/GYN physician Dr. Sa Cara Shaw, call the Centennial Women’s Group office at (615) 342-6880.