High-risk Pregnancy Care Makes a Difference

In high-risk pregnancy or when an emergency arises, Ascension Sacred Heart has maternal-fetal medicine specialists and OB-GYN hospitalists.

Ascension Sacred Heart High-risk Pregnancy Center

Our Program

A healthy baby is every mother's hope. Finding out you're pregnant can be both exciting and scary, especially if you have concerns about your baby's health.

When the unexpected happens, Ascension Sacred Heart is ready, offering experienced, lifesaving care for women who are at risk for complications during pregnancy, for premature and sick newborns, and for unborn children who are not developing as expected.

Our board-certified maternal-fetal medicine specialists (doctors specializing in high-risk obstetrics) see patients for:

  • One-time consultations and/or ultrasounds
  • Co-management of your pregnancy with your referring doctor
  • Transfer when desired by your referring doctor

Should your doctor refer you for a high-risk pregnancy consultation at Ascension Sacred Heart, the maternal-fetal medicine doctor and the nursing staff will perform the required testing, send detailed reports and maintain communication with your OB/GYN regarding the next steps of your care.

Northwest Florida's Regional Perinatal Center

Ascension Sacred Heart Regional Perinatal Center provides specialized medical care to women with high-risk pregnancies and their babies. As one of only 11 such centers in Florida, we provide high-risk pregnancy care in a variety of settings. In all treatment settings, mothers are provided with extensive education regarding their diagnosis, treatment and outcome expectations, as well as multidisciplinary care coordination with social services and intensive care nursery staff when necessary.

Satellite outreach clinics across Northwest Florida and South Alabama offer outpatient consultations, as well as genetic and preconception counseling. Find an office location or a high-risk pregnancy doctor near you.

High-risk mothers can be transported quickly and safely to Ascension Sacred Heart Pensacola via the area's only helicopter ambulance service providing high-risk obstetrical care.

For women needing an extended hospital stay and around-the-clock monitoring leading up to delivery, our inpatient high-risk pregnancy unit at Ascension Sacred Heart Pensacola strives to provide a comfortable, soothing experience. Our Pensacola campus also includes the region's only Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit to care for critically ill and premature newborns. Plus, the Studer Family Children's Hospital at Ascension Sacred Heart offers a medical staff of more than 120 doctors across 30 pediatric specialties, ready to care for your baby should complications arise.

Treating high-risk conditions

Our team is experienced in treating and managing various medical complications of pregnancy, including diabetes, hypertension, preeclampsia, placenta previa, multiple gestations (twins and triplets), genetic disorders, infectious diseases, premature rupture of the amniotic membranes, preterm labor and RH disease.

Preconception care

Before pregnancy, our team can provide advice for women with chronic health conditions or those who have experienced complicated pregnancies in the past. At a preconception consultation, the maternal-fetal medicine specialist reviews a woman's medical and pregnancy history and helps to map out an optimal strategy for her next pregnancy.

Pregnancy problems

Unexpected problems can arise during pregnancy, and women who have experienced complicated pregnancies in the past face higher risks with their next pregnancy. We help manage problems such as recurrent pregnancy loss. Women who experience multiple miscarriages may have an underlying health problem that makes it more difficult for them to carry a pregnancy. Our specialists can assess for such problems and recommend treatments to reduce risk in the next pregnancy.

Maternal health problems

Pregnancy can worsen existing health problems, such as high blood pressure, diabetes, or kidney disease. Our team monitors these high-risk pregnancies and offers guidance on treatments to manage mom's medical problems with minimal risk to the baby.

Tests and procedures

Prenatal testing will help your doctor determine whether your baby will need extra levels of care before, during and after delivery.

Although your doctor is able to perform some testing in his/her office, comprehensive testing is only available at specific centers such as the Ascension Sacred Heart Regional Perinatal Center. Some of the prenatal diagnostic tests available through our program include:


  • Genetic counseling
  • First-trimester screening
  • Diabetic management
  • Ultrasound (diagnostic or targeted)
  • Doppler-flow studies
  • Fetal echocardiography
  • Amniocentesis
  • Chorionic Villus Sampling
  • Intravenous fetal therapy
  • Fetal diagnosis
  • Biophysical profiles
  • Cervical cerclage

The Regional Perinatal Center is accredited in obstetrical ultrasound by the American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine. All services are provided on both an inpatient and outpatient.

Sick Newborns Get Intensive Pediatric Specialty Care

You and your baby will have access to pediatric specialists and surgeons well-trained in the unique needs of babies born premature or with a serious health condition. Our Level III NICU rating distinguishes The Studer Family Children's Hospital for providing a high level of intensive newborn medicine to critically ill babies. Our team of doctors, neonatal nurses and respiratory therapists can be at your baby's side any time day or night. The Studer Family Children's Hospital at Sacred Heart strives to be your child's medical home for all your healthcare needs. The Children's Hospital also provides coordinated care with Ascension Sacred Heart Hospital at the Emerald Coast's Family Birth Place.

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