Meet Dr. William Nolan, an OB-GYN with UPMC Divine Mercy Women’s Health in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. This group was formerly with Holy Spirit Hospital, and it was a Catholic medical practice. It has since merged with the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center of Central PA, but unlike with other secular institutions, they have been allowed to continue to practice in a way that is in accord with their ethics.
“I think they [UPMC] saw that it was good care,” Dr. Nolan said. “They saw that our community really wanted this type of care. They saw this faith-based care was important to the patients in the community, and they wanted to be a part of it.”
The demand for this kind of care was clear, and it attracted patients from far away — even with other hospitals close by. “They travel anywhere from half an hour to multiple hours away for care,” Dr. Nolan said. “Some people fly in, three or four-hour drives just to deliver their baby or get their prenatal care.”
Dr. Nolan comes from a family aligned with this ethical practice. His mother co-founded the Gianna Center for Women’s Health & Fertility, located in New York City, which provides Creighton Model and NaProTechnology services. Dr. Nolan has also personally seen the benefits of FertilityCare and NaProTechnology. He first became interested while shadowing an introductory session with a 38-year old woman. She was told, “‘You have no other options — you need to do IVF,’” Dr. Nolan said. “She learned her cycle, and within two or three months she got pregnant without any significant help.”
While in medical school, Dr. Nolan went to lunch with one of his best friends and that person’s aunt. They asked why he wanted to go into obstetrics and gynecology, which they considered unusual for a male doctor. “I told her that previous story, and she started breaking down in tears,” Dr. Nolan said. Her daughter was 33 and married for nine years, but she did not have children yet after seven years of trying. “They go to Thanksgiving and everyone says, ‘you guys should have kids, why are you guys waiting so long?’” Dr. Nolan referred that woman to the Gianna Center where she was taught the Creighton Model. “Within 12 months of that lunch meeting,” Dr. Nolan said, “she’d had surgery for endometriosis and was pregnant.”
Dr. Nolan sees this practice not just as good medicine, but also as a bridge to a more spiritual relationship with God. “When they see that the church actually predicted a lot of these things, and asked for a method to help women, and then that method was already built into our bodies, they see the beauty of that,” Dr. Nolan said. “And it makes God less of a mystery to people.”