Low-Risk Maternity Clinic
Welcome to the Low-Risk Maternity Clinic at the SASPCN
We feel privileged to help you on this special journey.
Our Low-Risk Maternity Clinic has 10 experienced family physicians who greatly value providing comprehensive pregnancy and postpartum care to you and your family. Our team also includes an amazing RN with extensive labour and delivery experience.
We will see you from the beginning of your pregnancy at our shared care clinic in the SASPCN, and our deliveries occur at the Sturgeon Community Hospital. After your delivery, we offer you and your baby visits at 1 week and 4 weeks postpartum, and then we return you to the care of your primary care provider at 6 weeks postpartum.
Our team has a cumulative 150 years of experience providing maternity care. With you at the center of all decision-making, we will provide evidence-based care that is individualized to you and your choices. Our team has your and your baby’s health as our top priorities. Our team also supports families who have chosen to have doulas as a member of their pregnancy team, and we recognize the value that doulas offer.
We also maintain close relationships with our local obstetricians and are able to easily access advice should your care develop any extra complexities.
For a complete list of pregnancy-related resources, please visit our resources page under the maternity section.
Accessing pregnancy care at our Low-Risk Maternity Clinic
We prefer having a referral form from your family physician so we know who is involved in your care. They can send their own referral letter or they can complete and fax our referral form. However, if you are unable to get a referral, then please call our office to schedule a time to speak with our maternity nurse to see if our maternity clinic is appropriate for you. She can perform an initial discussion with you and then book a first prenatal appointment with our team if appropriate. We typically book the first visit with our team in the office between 9-11 weeks of pregnancy.
There are certain conditions that may make an obstetrician a more appropriate care provider for some pregnant people. A list of these conditions can be viewed here in our referral guide. If you are not sure if you may have one of these conditions, please discuss them with your referring physician, or feel free to contact our office.
What to expect from your care with our Low-Risk Maternity Clinic
Our team includes 10 experienced family physicians and skilled maternity trained nursing staff. You are able to select your visits in such a way to be seen consistently by a few select physicians so that you are able to create a strong connection with them, or you can choose to see a new physician at every visit if you prefer trying to meet the entire team.
Our team will provide you with as much support as you need throughout your pregnancy. Routine prenatal visits occur every 4 weeks until 28 weeks, every 2 weeks until 36 weeks, and then weekly until we meet your little one. Beyond these regularly scheduled visits, we are available to see you if anything changes or if pregnancy questions come up.
Our physicians provide 24-7 coverage for our patients and are therefore able to manage our patients’ urgent pregnancy-related concerns (any time after 20 weeks gestation) through the Labor and Delivery unit at the Sturgeon Community Hospital. Hospital policies mandate that urgent visits to the hospital for patients before they are 20 weeks pregnant have to occur in the Emergency Department. For concerns that can be addressed in the office, we do have urgent appointment slots available during our regular clinic hours and we offer phone support to help you and see if we are able to manage the issue via phone.
Our team delivers at the Sturgeon Community Hospital located at 201 Boudreau Rd in St. Albert. We have a scheduled call rotation for our physicians, so our patients are not able to select which physician is working for their delivery. That being said, our clinic has carefully selected its team members, and we all have a similar approach to pregnancy and delivery care. We value our patients being able to make informed decisions on the care they receive. To the best of our abilities, we will support you in achieving the pregnancy and birth that you desire. We also have the experience and training to recognize when labor may be straying from the expected path, and to help guide you through your options of the next available steps.
The maternity assessments area, and the labor and delivery rooms are both located in Unit 25 on the second floor of the hospital. A few hours after delivery, the new parents and baby are transferred down the hall to our postpartum rooms located in Unit 27. Our hospital offers families support to infants interested in breastfeeding with a registered lactation consultant on weekdays. Our hospital is also fortunate to have a fantastic level 2 NICU located directly on Unit 25, in case a baby needs any specialized medical care. The hospital’s maternity team has created the following educational video Sturgeon Community Hospital postpartum discharge teaching that you may find useful.
After discharge, we routinely see you and your baby at 1 week and 4 weeks postpartum, and then return you to the care of your primary care provider at 6 weeks postpartum. If you do not have a family physician, our team will do our best to connect you with a Family Physician in our community.
Proud to train Alberta’s future doctors
Our Low-Risk Maternity Clinic is an official teaching site for the University of Alberta. We may request your permission to have resident doctors or medical students be involved in providing your prenatal care and assisting at your baby’s delivery. During your visits or at your delivery, you always have the option of requesting to see our physician without a learner present.
Respecting members from all of our communities
At our Low-Risk Maternity Clinic, we value all of our patients. We respect our patients of all backgrounds, religions, races, genders, sexualities, and beliefs. It is our intention to create a safe space for all. We recognize that not all individuals who can become pregnant identify as female. Our team has taken steps to educate our physicians and our staff on how to create a safe, inclusive space for people who identify as trans, non-binary, or gender diverse. We also welcome feedback on how to better achieve this goal.
Meet our team:
Dr. Bailey Adams (she/her)
Dr. Adams was raised in Edmonton and pursued her undergraduate and medical studies at the University of Alberta. During her training, she created a documentary about midwifery care and doula support entitled “A Mother is Born” with the Birthing Babies Together Team. She finished her medical training in northern Alberta but ultimately settled in St. Albert, happy to join this fantastic maternity team of like-minded providers. She also has a small family practice, and she supports families in their infant feeding journeys in her consultation practice. As an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant, she also enjoys sharing her skills and knowledge with her colleagues, and with our maternity patients who are interested in learning more about breastfeeding/chestfeeding their babies.
Outside of the office, Dr. Adams enjoys puzzling, painting, crafting, and spending time outdoors with her family.
Dr. Krista Bennett (she/her)
Originally from a rural community, Krista Bennett completed her medical degree, family medicine residency, and fellowship training at the University of Alberta. She has been privileged to be involved with this amazing team of skilled and caring physicians, nurses, and allied staff since her training in 2001. As well, she was able to participate in deliveries with the Natural Childbirth clinic and in both appointments and deliveries in the Centering Pregnancy program in St. Albert early in her career. She loves learning about and providing maternity and newborn care, discussing options, and helping families to make informed choices along the path as their family grows.
When she is not working, she adores spending time with her husband and their three children. They love going outside to camp, ski, swim, cycle, or skate whenever possible and when forced indoors they enjoy baking, music, and reading
Dr. Karen Ching (she/her)
Dr. Ching was born and raised in Edmonton and completed her medical degree at the University of Alberta. She completed her residency in 2000 and worked for a few years in north Edmonton before establishing her family practice in St. Albert in 2004. She is delighted to work with her family medicine colleagues and her maternity team. She is constantly learning to improve the care that she provides to her patients, and she considers it a true privilege to walk through life with each and every patient. Also, she feels especially blessed to share the intimate ups and downs of pregnancy, childbirth, and parenting with her maternity patients. When she is not working, she loves spending time with her husband and two sons, watching them play badminton, listening to Christian music, and going for walks.
Dr. Kevin Desmarais (he/him)
Dr. Desmarais grew up in Ontario but moved to Edmonton for medical school in 2009, where he completed all of his training through the University of Alberta. He has intermittently been a member of the maternity group since 2015. He spent two years in Vancouver, where he worked in the downtown eastside with marginalized women and families affected by substance use. He considers maternity care the best part of his week.
Outside of work he enjoys traveling, playing hockey, going skiing, and of course, spending time with his baby daughter.
Dr. Barbara Fischer (she/her)
Dr. Fischer completed her medical degree at the University of Alberta. She completed her residency in 1998 and worked rurally until 2012 when she moved to St. Albert. Maternity care has always been a much-loved part of her family practice.
Passions outside of medicine include her 2 children, the perpetual training of her dog, and planning her next travel vacation.
Dr. Celine Gannon
Dr. Gannon completed her medical training at the University of Alberta and has lived and worked in St. Albert since that time.
She is grateful to have 4 children of her own, 2 dogs, and a cat. She loves being a mom, watching her energetic children grow and develop. She also feels very privileged to be involved with other women‘s motherhood journeys!
Dr. Jackie Kassam (she/her)
Dr. Kassam was born and raised locally in the town of Morinville. She landed in St. Albert after completing her MD and residency at the University of Alberta in 2001 and has been delivering babies with the maternity group ever since. Even after 20 years, she still finds each birth miraculous and only a baby on the way can get her out of bed at 3 am with a smile on her face.
Outside of work, she loves to travel the world with her husband and 2 children. When she needs to recharge she spends time in her garden or walking the beautiful paths of St. Albert.
Dr. Marielle Pratt
Dr. Pratt was born and raised in Calgary where she completed her undergraduate degree in Zoology at the University of Calgary. She then moved to Edmonton for medical school at the University of Alberta in 2003 and completed her residency in Family Medicine in 2009. She now has a family practice in St. Albert and loves doing low-risk obstetrics. She is a mom to 2 beautiful girls and a fur baby. Outside of medicine, she loves to travel and spend time with her family.
Dr. Juliana Rey Parra
Dr. Rey Parra is a Family Doctor who completed both her Ph.D. and her residency training at the University of Alberta. She has practiced in Edmonton and St. Albert since graduating in 2013. She has a special interest in women and children’s health and delivers babies as part of her medical practice. Her goal is to provide excellent primary care, adopting the Medical Home Model. She is a proud member of the St. Albert Primary Care Network, where she has served on the board of directors. In her spare time, she enjoys hiking and being outdoors.
Dr. Margaret Schaffter
Dr. Schaffter is also a graduate of the U of A. She has lived and practiced in St. Albert for many years and has had the privilege of attending more births than she can count. Supporting women and families on their pregnancy journey have always been her favorite part of family practice. Dr. Schaffter’s other interests include crafts of all sorts, event and party planning, travel, King Charles cavalier spaniels, and escape rooms.
Christine Toner, Maternity Team Nurse
Christine Toner has been working as a registered nurse since the mid-1990s. After initially working in acute care for many years, she transferred to working on the labor and delivering unit where she enjoyed helping families welcome their new babies for 5 years. That experience has subsequently been put to good use since joining our Low-Risk Maternity Clinic almost 10 years ago.
Outside of work, she enjoys spending time with her children and her dog.
Allied Health Team Members
For patients whose family physician is a member of the SASPCN, you can also access care from other healthcare professionals at the SASPCN such as our dietitians, our behavioral health specialists, and more.
Thank you for coming to learn more about our team. We look forward to getting to know you better during your time at our clinic.