At Essentia Health-Virginia, we’re Iron Range moms caring for Iron Range families

June 07, 2024  By: Anthony Matt

Iron Range Moms

Trusting your health care to Essentia Health-Virginia goes beyond a simple doctor/patient relationship. Our providers call the Iron Range home, just like our patients do. To them, the region’s future is important. They not only care for, but are raising the next generation of Iron Rangers.

Recently, several of our family medicine and OB/GYN physicians have experienced a baby boom of sorts, adding to their already established families. Three of our family medicine providers with rural OB training have either had a child in the past year, or will soon. They’re all moms, who care for children professionally while trusting the care of their own children to Essentia colleagues. They have the same questions and concerns other patients have about children.

They’re moms with children caring for moms with children.

Dr. Katherine Donaldson and husband Beau, who live in Mountain Iron, added to their family in May 2023 with a son, Levi. He made a big sister out of the Donaldsons’ daughter, Lucy. 

"I love my kids more than life itself," said Dr. Donaldson. "I love that I have a career that helps me introduce that same love and joy to other people by helping to bring their children into this world."

Dr. Kelsey Redland-Kladivo and her husband, TJ, who also live in Mountain Iron, are expecting a baby girl in June to join their 2-year-old son, Landon. She was driven to care for moms and their children by a strong desire to help them maneuver the unknowns of an often tricky time in life.

"I love helping moms navigate and sort through the vulnerabilities and unpredictability of pregnancy, labor and delivery, and early parenthood,” she said. “I also enjoy being able to watch patients feel empowered and grow through these experiences, which are some of the most memorable things they will ever have in their life. It is a privilege to be a part of these experiences with patients and their families.”

Britt resident Dr. Hana Main and her husband, Adam, just welcomed their second child, Sophia, in April. Sophia joins their 2-year-old son, Sam.

"There are so many wonderful things about being a mom," said Dr. Main. "I love seeing the world through their eyes, and the joy they bring our home is amazing. I also have to say I love the snuggles, I love watching them laugh and seeing who my partner has become as a father playing with our son and interacting with our daughter."

Dr. Redland-Kladivo has 10 years of experience caring for women and children — from prenatal care all the way through birth and beyond.

"Delivering babies and watching patients become new parents is by far the best part of my job," she said. "It is also a unique way to see and understand the dynamics of a family and how family medicine is in a unique position to treat and serve patients and their families holistically."

Dr. Donaldson said her own experiences with motherhood help shape the care she delivers to her patients, and gives her a sense of understanding and compassion.

"I think that having experienced the whole process of going through pregnancy, labor, delivery and caring for a newborn and child myself has really helped me relate to my patients at every stage they might be going through," said Dr. Donaldson. "Relating to patients can really help foster a trusting relationship. I want my patients to feel heard and cared for, and I want to care for my patients just as I would my own family." 

Dr. Main joined Essentia about two years ago and was thrilled to have her second baby at Essentia Health-Virginia.

"Receiving my pregnancy care and delivering here was a really wonderful experience," said Dr. Main. "I was able to deliver among people that I knew cared for me not just as a patient but as a friend. I really value our ability to take extra time to give people whatever support they need, be it with breastfeeding or any of the other things we experience in pregnancy and postpartum."

While all three understand the intricacies of the medical side of caring for families, being that they are moms themselves they understand it on a more relatable level and can truly empathize and understand the nuances, challenges and happiness that come with those little bundles of joy.

"There is something so special about following someone through their entire pregnancy journey, and then getting to follow their children and see them grow afterwards," said Dr. Donaldson. "I get the privilege of being alongside these people during some of the most precious and vulnerable moments in their lives. If I'm lucky, I get to be there for the next pregnancy journey as well. I really do feel lucky."

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