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  Back to previous page ¦ Obstetrics and gynecology stories ¦ Search stories

Doctor and nurse celebrate
milestone together

As they worked together over Christmas,
Dr. Shari Orser and Jenna McBride discussed
Dr. Orser’s upcoming career milestone—the
delivery of the 3,500th baby in her career as an obstetrician/gynecologist. McBride, a Birth Center registered nurse and a patient of Dr. Orser’s, was expecting her first baby in March.

Brooks McBride, born March 2, arrived as baby 3,500.

“We really did not plan this,” Dr. Orser said. “Jenna developed some problems and was induced two weeks early, but we had no idea it would work out the way it did.”

Their working relationship made the event even more special for both of them.

Dr. Shari Orser, right, and Jenna McBride work together at Sanford Health. McBride’s son, Brooks, was Dr. Orser’s 3,500th baby.

“It was such a coincidence to be number 3,500,” McBride said. “I knew how exciting this milestone was for her, and we were happy it happened to be us.”

McBride has been assisting Dr. Orser with Birth Center deliveries for nearly three years. When she and her husband, Mike, were experiencing infertility issues, she had a sound foundation for her decision to choose
Dr. Orser.

Dr. Shari Orser
Shari Orser, MD
Obstetrics and Gynecology
  “She has many years of experience, and I liked her style and technique,” McBride said. “Even as a labor and delivery nurse, I had questions during my pregnancy. Dr. Orser was very approachable and always gave straightforward answers. She’s current on research and practices and knows what works. She also has a great heart.”

Decades of change

Dr. Orser started tracking her deliveries in 1981 after completing her residency and starting her practice in Bismarck.

“At that time we didn’t have computer software for tracking, so I used a notebook,” she said.

Advances in computer technology have been only one change over the course of her career.

“Ultrasound was just beginning to be used and was not performed routinely when I started practicing,” she said. “Now, everyone undergoes an ultrasound, and most want to know the sex. I think it’s nice to have some element of surprise for those parents waiting to see what the baby will be.”

More pregnancies involve in vitro fertilization, and new testing is available for detecting chromosomal abnormalities. Fetal monitoring has also advanced through the years. Epidurals were not used when Dr. Orser was in residency. Babies are also entering the world in a more homelike atmosphere, rather than the traditional delivery room of Dr. Orser’s early career.

“At Sanford Health, we’re fortunate to have one room where mothers stay their entire time unless a c-section is needed,” she said. “We’ve transitioned from the sterile hospital environment and make the environment more homey and comfortable for patients and families.”

Fathers were always present at the births, but now those attending often include immediate and extended family and close friends.

Dr. Orser has delivered babies at Sanford Health since 1981. “I like delivering my babies here,” she said. “We have a great nursing team as well as an excellent nursery and neonatologist. I also prefer having a mother staying in the same room for all her care.”

Looking ahead to 4,000

McBride is putting her experience caring for newborns to good use. “It’s fun to take care of my own baby,” she said. “When we were in the hospital, I had to remind myself I didn’t have to wear gloves when I changed him.” In addition to stringent hand-washing requirements, Birth Center nurses wear gloves for certain procedures to minimize the risk of transmitting infection between infants, visitors and staff.

With no plans to retire anytime soon, Dr. Orser is now setting her sites on delivering her 4,000th baby.

“You form a special bond with the family when you’re part of that day and their joy,” she said. “I still find that so rewarding.”

The McBrides plan to help Dr. Orser reach her next goal. “I can’t thank her enough for the beautiful boy she helped get here,” McBride said. “When we’re ready for number two, we’ll definitely help out with her numbers. She’ll always have a special place in our hearts.”

Click here for more information about Sanford Health Obstetrics and Gynecology or call
(701) 323-5870.


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