How a Big Sister Helped Bring her Little Brother into the World

The Women’s Center at Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center is known for offering family-centered care, but on June 26, 2017, Danielle Rodrigues and Ernest Ortegon truly had a family-involved birthing experience.

Under the direction, supervision and guidance of Stephanie Cropper, MD, OB/GYN, Hailey Ortegon, 15, assisted in the delivery of Danielle’s third son, Matthew Ortegon, born weighing 8lbs., 3 oz.

“Dr. Cropper helped her guide him onto my belly,” says Danielle. “She handled it like a champ!”

Hailey, a sophomore, has been interested in healthcare since learning about anatomy in her homeschool health class.

Months ago, the family saw an article of a 12-year-old who assisted in her mother’s delivery. They spoke with Dr. Cropper about wanting to do something similar, to which she happily agreed. In the months leading up to her mother’s due date, Hailey devoted herself to learning about and watching videos on birth and birthing techniques.

From start to finish, Hailey was present to support her mother in every way – she tracked her contractions, monitored her blood pressure and acted just as a midwife would. When it was finally time for Danielle to deliver, Hailey was right at the bedside with Dr. Cropper, ready to welcome baby Matthew into the world!

Hailey says she is excited to continue caring for and supporting her mother postpartum, and to help her care for her new little brother.

“He’s like my best friend,” says Hailey.

After graduation, she plans is to attend a four-year university, then enlist in the military and find a career in pediatrics, obstetrics, or another medical field.

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