Reader recommendation request: Mom 2 B needs OB

From WSB reader Gabrielle, to whom we send hearty congratulations on the future arrival:

I live in West Seattle and this is my first pregnancy. Would it be possible … to ask for a referral for a good OBGYN in the Seattle area or even better, the West Seattle area? Also, a good birth center/hospital? I would really appreciate the help, as I’m the first of my friends to have a baby and no one has a good recommendation.

24 Replies to "Reader recommendation request: Mom 2 B needs OB"

  • star September 29, 2007 (8:51 pm)

    Congratulations! The best hospital to have a baby here in Seattle is Group Health. They have the lowest intervention and C-section rate. I had my son at Swedish Ballard and an amazing birth experience. I used CNM Sally Avenson. She is awesome. One of the great things about Sally is that you can deliver with her at Ballard or Group Health OR if you want to have an out of hospital birth, she also does homebirths as well as birth center births. She’s been a midwife for over 20 years and is very respected.

  • que September 29, 2007 (8:51 pm)

    I love love loved my OB. Dr Theresa Burdick. Her number is (206)386-3605. She practices out of Swedish Hospital (office is 801 Broadway Suite 707).

    She is engaging and kind and I felt very well cared for. Unlike a lot of OB’s she never has the “on-call” OB deliver her patient’s babies. She always is there for the births. I wanted as close to a natural childbirth as I could and she was extremely supportive. Really what I wanted was as close to a midwifery experience as I could, but with more medical backup and that was exactly what I got. I was able to give birth with no drugs and it was beautiful.

    Big love to Dr Burdick!!

  • Bonnie September 29, 2007 (9:16 pm)

    Loved my OB. Her name is Dr. Karen Bohmke. She’s at Swedish. 206-386-3400

  • Ann K September 29, 2007 (9:32 pm)

    Swedish Physicians for Women in the Nordstrom Tower right next to the hospital – all physicians in the practice are great. Dr Judge was my main, though she is now home for a year with her own baby, but everyone is very kind, patient, willing to help and open to options. Parking lot at bldg which is handy. All are straight-talkers, they will give you the info you need. Nurses all great. I had a tough pg, bedrest, sideways baby, c section…everyone involved supportive all the way.

  • K September 29, 2007 (9:33 pm)

    My OB is Dr. Diana Koala at Seattle OBGYN at Swedish First Hill. She is great! I had my son at Swedish and will be having my second one there as well.

  • TD September 29, 2007 (9:36 pm)

    Northwest Womens Healthcare – any of the doctors -206-386-3400 -Dr Robert Levine

  • Evan September 29, 2007 (10:09 pm)

    Swedish has a clinic up towards Admiral that includes OB, pediatricians, and family doctors. We just had our first child one month ago and had a great experience with them. I personally really like the family doctor route because it means you can have one person treat both mom and child.

    We had ours with Dr. Dagg and recommend him highly, and have another friend who had hers with Dr. Okorn and was very happy.

    We had a natural birth and were very impressed with the labor and postpartum nurses at Swedish, as well.

  • hypechick September 29, 2007 (10:13 pm)

    I second Group Health as the best place to birth. I’m getting ready for my second birth and I’m using Cindie Brown CNM, this time who often works with Sally Avenson. I used Sally last time and I wasn’t in love with in the end. Congrats and Good Luck!

  • *t* September 29, 2007 (10:32 pm)

    I third Group Health, the Nurse Midwife clinic there gives you more time in appointments than you would get with an OB. You have appointments with the various 4 or 5 midwives on their staff through your pregnancy, and then get whomever is on duty when you give birth. Which is fine because they are all awesome.

  • wsmom September 29, 2007 (10:46 pm)

    I recommend Highline Hospital. It’s only about 12 minutes from the Fauntleroy Ferry (closer than downtown if you live south). Dr. Megan Kelly is the best MD I’ve ever encountered. Had an awesome experience at Highline. From beginning to end, I was in the same room. C-S rate is very low! Good luck!!

  • MargL September 30, 2007 (12:32 am)

    I second Highline and Megan Kelly. Had a great experience even tho’ the baby didn’t want to cooperate and we had an unplanned c-section that Dr. Kelly performed. Very comfortable facility, good birthing classes, fantastic lactation consultants.

  • Wes September 30, 2007 (9:56 am)

    Dr. Elena M. Hannon, MD
    Dr. Hannon practices Obstetrics & Gynecology in Seattle, Washington. Dr. Elena Hannon, a female, graduated from the University Of Co School Of Med with a MD and has been in the profession for 12 years.

    1101 Madison Street,
    Seattle, Washington (WA) 98104

    She delivered both my kids (Cesearean)and did it with great professionalism and care. She was always very comforting to my wife and I, especially when there were some concerns for our babies (hence the C-sections). I think she is top notch, and this from a dad!
    Look her up there are a lot of great reviews for her!

  • Jiggers September 30, 2007 (11:27 am)

    I should have have been an OBGYN Dr.. darn what was I thinking..

  • Kelly September 30, 2007 (12:42 pm)

    I definitely second Dr. Hannon. She is the absolute best! However, I don’t know if she is accepting new patients, as she is in the Seattle magazine “Best Doctors” issue for the 2nd year in a row. She is very compassionate, friendly, and down-to-earth. Another doctor in her group at the Polyclinic is Dr. Ann Bridges who ended up delivering our son, and we had a really good experience with her, too. Congratulations and good luck!

  • becca September 30, 2007 (12:49 pm)

    “Low C-section rates” is a misleading way to represent a hospital. Swedish and UW hospitals have higher C-section rates because they have extensive specialty antepartum and neonatal intensive care units, the only in the area and both very highly regarded. If you have a problem pregnancy, delivery or special needs newborn, these are the places to be. If not, there are lots of good birthing options in the Seattle-area.

  • Lou's Wife September 30, 2007 (1:53 pm)

    Jiggers – I’m glad you weren’t my OB (although it probably would have been an entertaining birth).

    I go to the Seattle OB/GYN group. It is all women doctors if that is important to you should your birth plan go awry and you can’t use your assigned doctor. They are connected to Swedish (First Hill, downtown) and in the Madison building next door. My first kid was born in CA. My second kid at Swedish a few months ago. Overall, Swedish was great. Awesome food (get the milkshakes and cheeseburgers), low pressure about breast feeding. My only complaint is being woken up by one nurse to take vitals when I was enjoying some shut eye. Mine was a C-section and the surgery team was great too.

  • AMDG September 30, 2007 (7:50 pm)

    Another nod to Dr. Karen Bohmke. She and her OB husband started their practice years ago, have an excellent handful of additional OBs on the team with a variety of personality for a great fit.
    You get to know them all during your term so that whenever baby comes, the doc on duty at the moment won’t be a total stranger.
    Six years and continued satisfaction…

    Some of the staff / nursing team we are thrilled to say have become friends.

    Not infrequently she does not take new patients into the practice except by referral. If that moment is now gives us a shout for some assistance.

  • misty September 30, 2007 (8:20 pm)

    Yes, Dr. Boemke’s husband is Dr. Levine and he is absolutely wonderful. All the docs at Northwest Womens are great!

  • DALYDBL October 1, 2007 (8:43 pm)

    I gave birth to my first child almost a month ago. For the first five months of my pregnancy I was under the care of Northwest Women’s health at Swedish. My experience was very different from the ones listed above. It always took a long time to get appointments, questions were not answered if I called them in between appointment times (which I only did three times), and appointments generally lasted five minutes and felt very rushed. After a good scare which turned out to be nothing, I changed to a naturopath/midwife. If you have a low-risk pregnancy I recommend that you condsider other options, you may feel more comfortable with a more personal experience than an OB will provide.

    Morgan Martin is so kind, gentle and the head of the midwifery department at Bastyr. I had a waterbirth at her clinic and it was wonderful!

    Consider a doula. I don’t think I would have made it through a drug-free 26 hour labor without one. She helped me through each contraction, it was AMAZING!

    Penny Simkin is a Seattle native, and she started DONA (Doulas of North America) She also teaches a few classes.

    I highly recommend that you check out Big Belly Services for their post-partum class series.

    And last but not least, “Mothering” magazine is a great read.

    Best wishes for your pregnancy and birth!

  • Kennedy's Momma October 5, 2007 (2:40 pm)

    I know I am piping in a little late But like Kelly and Wess I agree. Dr. Anne Bridges was my doctor but was out on holiday when I was thought to be going into labor (Preeclampsia and kidney stone) and Dr. Hannon ended up delivering. I recommend both; Dr. Bridges has been practicing for a long time and is very knowledgeable and sweet. And personally you cannot beat Swedish. From West Seattle it took me 10 min or less to get there. Congratulations! And good luck on your search!

  • Kennedy's Momma October 5, 2007 (2:50 pm)

    I know I am piping in a little late But like Kelly and Wess I agree. Dr. Anne Bridges was my doctor but was out on holiday when I was thought to be going into labor (Preeclampsia and kidney stone) and Dr. Hannon ended up delivering. I recommend both; Dr. Bridges has been practicing for a long time and is very knowledgeable and sweet. And personally you cannot beat Swedish. Congratulations! And good luck on your search!

  • boxermama January 31, 2008 (2:15 pm)

    I just wanted to add in that there are a lot of great home and birth center birth options here in Seattle. The midwives here are some of the best in the country and you will have a healthy, safe birth experience in a warm and loving environment where you get to call all the shots.

    There is a list here, and I know one is in West Seattle.
    enjoy the pregnancy!!

  • Alexandrea Douglas February 12, 2008 (12:24 pm)

    I’m hoping to get in to see Dr. Karen Bohmke. Wonder if anyone might be able to offer a referral? Looks like that’s the only way she might take on a new patient. My email is

  • Jane August 29, 2008 (1:44 pm)

    I switched from Karen Bohmke to a midwife. I had had a great first birth at Swedish, but my OB had retired and I was referred to Bohmke/Levine’s clinic. When I said I wanted as close to a midwife-attended birth as I could get, Dr. Bohmke gave an involuntary snort. She explained that they definitely weren’t midwives. I was really embarrassed by how she reacted, but I tried to just get over it. I then lost that baby–went to my 2nd trimester appt and there was no heartbeat. At the appt, she was very brusk and matter-of-fact, not at all warm. I’m sure they see miscarriages all day long, but for me it was horrible and not at all routine. The young male doc there did the D&C because Dr. Bohmke didn’t have time. He was very nice. I was just much happier switching to a midwife once I got pregnant again.

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