Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center Celebrates First Anniversary of Successful Doula Program


Written by workbeacmc

May 31, 2024

 From left to right: Memorial doulas Rachel Brundidge, Tiffany Blackmon (seated), Danielle Foti, and Chinelle Smith lead a workshop demonstrating comfort measure techniques as part of the hospital’s comprehensive doula program.

NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y. — Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center (NFMMC) is proud to announce the celebration of the first anniversary of its doula program, which supports women throughout pregnancy and during birth. Memorial’s doula program began in January 2023 and welcomed its first newborn in May 2023. Since then, 50 Niagara County women have had a doula by their side during the birthing experience, with plans to serve 75 more this year.

In addition to providing continuous support during labor and delivery, doulas affiliated with Memorial offer a range of services, including conducting prenatal and postpartum workshops, accompanying participants to OB-GYN visits, demonstrating and practicing comfort measures, and assisting pregnant women in creating birth plans. The program also emphasizes continuity of care through home visiting services, ensuring ongoing support beyond the perinatal period.

Sheila K. Kee, Memorial’s Chief Operating Officer, noted that findings from a survey of women whose births were supported by doulas underscore the program’s success during its first year of operation. “One hundred percent of respondents reported they would recommend the program to friends and family and that they were satisfied with their birthing experience,” Kee said.

“The support we provide does not end with birth,” said Eileen Kineke, Director of the P3 Center at Niagara Falls Memorial. “Many clients also enroll in the P3 Center’s Perinatal and Infant Community Health program, which offers long-term support, home visiting services, referrals, education, and screening for expectant parents and families with children aged two and under. Additionally, our program offers breastfeeding support groups, community baby showers, and family events at no cost.”

Heather Daoust, who had a doula attend her delivery in April, praised the program, saying, “It was wonderful. My doula encouraged me to keep moving, which led to a fast and easy labor. She helped me through my contractions. Just having a doula, in general, was the best decision I made.”

Another participant, Alyssa Frank, shared, “Having a doula allowed me to focus on my child rather than the outside world.”


Founded in 1895, Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center (NFMMC) has a long tradition of serving the Niagara community. NFMMC’s hospital and primary stroke program are accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Health Care, and its primary care network is accredited by the National Committee for Quality Assurance. Memorial’s inpatient services include a cardiac/stroke unit, a medical–surgical unit, an ICU, a Labor and Delivery unit, and an Adult Inpatient Psychiatry unit, the only one of its kind in Niagara County. Memorial serves as a Center for Community Health by operating five primary care centers, a large outpatient adult mental health clinic, a Health Home, and several innovative community-based services.   Thanks to a partnership with Catholic Health, Kaleida Health, and Erie County Medical Center, NFMMC operates the only cardiac catheterization laboratory in Niagara County. Memorial is also home to the Golisano Medical Oncology Center, which operates in collaboration with Roswell Park Comprehensive Care Center.

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