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Kathleen Donaldson

I am originally from Fort Worth, Texas. I attended Texas Christian University graduating in 1984 with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN). In1987 I completed the Women’s Health Care Advanced Nurse Practitioner (NP) program at U.T. Southwestern. For the next 10 years, I worked for the Tarrant County Hospital District at John Peter Smith Hospital. I served as an OB/GYN NP as well as Director of Women’s Ambulatory Services.

In 1999, I completed the Parkland School of Nurse Midwifery in Dallas, Texas, as well as my Masters Degree. I practiced Nurse-Midwifery and served as associate faculty at UT Southwestern and at Parkland Hospital. In 2004, I joined North Texas Affiliated Medical Group and in2005 we became a faculty practice with the University of North Texas Health Science Center. The practice, now known as Acclaim Nurse-Midwives, has grown to be a leader in providing women’s health care.

I am proud and blessed to be part of this very special group of women. We are committed to serving the needs and desires of our patients at each season of life. As a mother of adult children, I understand the many different phases of life and bring my education and experiences to help treat as well as guide my patients to optimum health.

Candis Hicks

Originally from Ft Worth, I moved with my husband to Galveston Texas to attend nursing school at the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB). Once I received my BS in Nursing, I began working as a labor and delivery nurse at the university hospital. In 2001, I completed the Graduate program in which I obtained my Master’s Degree in Nursing as well as my certificate to practice midwifery.

I moved back to the Dallas/Ft Worth area not only to be close to my family but also to accept a position as a staff midwife with Parkland Hospital. My 6 years at Parkland gave me invaluable experience as well as a diverse population base to serve. I attended over 1150 births before joining Acclaim Nurse Midwives in February 2008.

Katie Hopkins

I am originally from the Houston area, and I moved to Fort Worth in 2003 to attend Texas Christian University. I graduated from TCU with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing in 2007. During my college years I fell in love with Fort Worth, and after graduating, I decided to make Fort Worth my permanent home. As a nurse, I worked in Labor and Delivery at John Peter Smith Hospital for 4 years and had the pleasure of working with the Acclaim Nurse-Midwives. I then felt the calling to pursue a career in midwifery.

I attended Baylor University Louise Herrington School of Nursing and graduated in 2011 from the Nurse-Midwifery/Doctor of Nursing Practice program. After receiving my certification, I accepted midwife a position Parkland Hospital in Dallas. Working at Parkland gave me valuable experience with both normal uncomplicated birth as well as management of high-risk pregnancy. I am extremely blessed to now have the opportunity to work with this amazing group of midwives who are supported by physicians who respect and believe in the midwifery philosophy!

Alison Hartwell

I grew up here in the DFW area and went to Dallas Baptist University for my undergraduate degree. After college I moved to Nashville for midwifery school at Vanderbilt University. I stayed and practiced there for a few years after school and loved the opportunity to work with an international population of women and families. Between my job there and returning to Fort Worth, I spent a few months overseas doing mission work and helping in rural health clinics. I am so thankful God provided the job with this midwife group when I returned. I love being able to work with women to educate them about pregnancy, women's health, and childbirth and to help them feel prepared to make important decisions regarding their care. I love to do DIY projects, playing with my dogs, spending time with my family and friends, staying involved with my church, traveling, and all things British.

Hannah Diamond

I am originally from Fort Worth, Texas. I graduated from Texas A&M University with a Bachelors of Science in Allied Health, and then completed my Bachelors of Science of Nursing (BSN) at TCU the following year. Upon graduation I worked at Cook Children’s Medical Center in pediatric cardiology, and then transitioned into Labor and Delivery at John Peter Smith Hospital. With the goal of getting my Master’s of Science in Midwifery/Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner, I returned to school in 2012, at Georgetown University in Washington DC, and completed my degree in 2014.

I became passionate about women’s health 10 years ago, which is why I am so thrilled and honored to be a part of the Acclaim Nurse-Midwives team. I look forward to serving our patients, and partnering with them to pursue a healthy life. In my freetime I enjoy mission projects with my church, baking, and spending time with my family and close friends here in Fort Worth.

Summer Okimoto

Summer Okimoto, DNP, CNM is a Texas Native who graduated from the University of Texas at Arlington in 2001 with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing.  Summer worked as a labor and delivery nurse for nine years. During that time, she volunteered at a pregnancy resource center and served overseas as a medical missionary. The experiences she had in providing care for women and their families, nationally and internationally, ignited a desire in her heart to strengthen her global commitment to women’s health by becoming a certified nurse-midwife (CNM).

In 2010, Summer Okimoto, graduated from the Nurse-Midwifery/Doctor of Nursing Practice program at Baylor University. Summer’s midwifery career began with the UNT Health Nurse-Midwives and she had the pleasure of working with them for two and a half years before moving to Denver, Colorado. From 2013-2015, she continued to practice full-scope midwifery with the University Nurse Midwives at University of Colorado Hospital. During that time, her knowledge was enhanced and her love for this profession grew significantly while caring for a large underserved population of women from all over the world.

Summer is passionate about seeing women empowered to make educated decisions and she enjoys providing evidence-based, compassionate and culturally sensitive care to women and their families.

In her spare time, she loves spending time with her family, church community, traveling, cooking, photography and participating in barre fitness.

Where Will You Birth?

cooperbirth-15bwUNT Nurse-Midwives provide birth services primarily at Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Fort Worth.  Since 2005, Harris Hospital has partnered with our group to support the women we serve.The nurses at Harris understand that pregnancy is a natural process and believe that every woman deserves a safe and satisfying birth experience.  We believe that hospital birth provides the best of both worlds.  While having the options of low to no interventions, you also have the availability of immediate resuscitation for your baby with a Level 3 NICU if needed.

At Harris, your birthing suite can be your home away from home. You are free to use your own music, aromatherapy and wear what you want. Options of no IV, intermittent fetal monitoring, laboring and birthing in water are not only common, but routine, for our patients.  Our physician back up are always available for emergencies and respect our differences in practice styles.
cooperbirth-203bwWe understand that making the decision on where to give birth is very important.  We believe hospital birth is the safest option for the majority of families. As you are interviewing potential providers, please consider the following questions:

Hospital Birth:

  • How important is it to you to have the option of pain management?
  • Is waterbirth available?
  • What is the cesarean section rate of the practice and the hospital?
  • Does the hospital have on site specialists such as Perinatologists and Neonatologists?
  • In the event of Cesarean Section, do they offer Gentle C-Section?
  • Does the nursing management fully support Nurse-Midwifery care?
  • Does the staff promote immediate skin to skin, delayed cord clamping, doula support, unlimited family presence and nurses that understand natural labor support?

cooperbirth-243bwBirth Center or Home Birth:

  • Does your insurance cover out of hospital birth?
  • Does the midwife adhere to a risking criteria and refer or consult for problems or complications?
  • What happens if complications of pregnancy occur requiring transfer of care and you have already paid out of pocket?
  • Are the providers Nurse-Midwives or Certified Professional MIdwives? Did they explain the differences?
  • Who is the backup physician? Do you have the option of meeting him or her?
  • In the event of an emergency or need for transfer, does the Birth Center have a relationship with a local hospital and physician group? How is the relationship structured?
  • What are the most common reasons you would be taken to the hospital?
  • If you transfer to a hospital, who accompanies you?
  • Is the Birth Center licensed and if so by whom?
  • Is the Birth Center accredited?

What if I Develop Complications During My Pregnancy?

The vast majority of pregnancies, labor, delivery and post partum courses will proceed without complications. Certified Nurse-Midwives are educated and experienced in managing the minor complications that do occasionally happen. More significant complications will be managed in consultation with one of the obstetrician/gynecologists with whom we share our practice. Certain obstetric situations may require a visit or series of visits to an obstetrical specialist, called a perinatologist. At all times during the course of your pregnancy, labor, delivery and post partum course, these physicians are available for us to consult and to co-manage or manage your care as indicated by each individual situation.

We enjoy an appreciative respect both for and from the experts with whom we work. In addition, as part of the network of the University of North Texas Health Science Center, we have access to an array of medical experts in many fields to accommodate needs as usual as back pain in pregnancy and as unusual as a rare blood disorder.

Can I See the Same Nurse-Midwife Throughout My Pregnancy?

The UNT Nurse-Midwives share a rotating call schedule and it will not be possible to predict which CNM will be on call when a woman goes into labor. For this reason, visits are scheduled with each of the six midwives during the course of prenatal care so we all have the opportunity to meet and get to know each other.

This works very well and facilitates a comfortable atmosphere for when women are in labor. Inevitably, some personalities “mesh” more readily than others and we all recognize and understand this as normal human interaction. Even so, we all trained and practice very similarly. It will be our goal both as a group and as the individual involved in your labor to create the most relaxing and comfortable setting for all concerned. Our goal is the best experience possible for each client. With this in mind, if your visit or situation is not going as you had hoped, communication is the key to facilitating a more satisfying climate for yourself. We all want to empower you in achieving your goals and to having the birth experience that you desire.

Can the UNT Nurse-Midwives do My Yearly Exam?

The UNT Nurse-Midwives offer women a lifetime of quality care. From puberty through menopause, nurse-midwives provide care for women through preconception counseling and exams, pregnancy, childbirth and post partum care, gynecological and contraceptive services, sexually transmitted disease diagnoses and treatment. Women may see the UNT Nurse-Midwives through peri and post-menopausal care, and prescriptions for pharmaceutical, as well as bioidential hormone, management is available. Nurse-midwives diagnose, prescribe and treat medical needs within their scope of practice and refer more medically complicated cases when indicated.

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