By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great local journalism.
Women’s care focus of new hospital shop
Store offers products for moms, cancer survivors
Reita Snipes, left, and Beth Allen look through a magazine displaying options women can choose from at Northside Hospital-Forsyth's new shop, A Woman's Place.
At a glance

A Woman’s Place is open in the women’s center at Northside Hospital-Forsyth. Consultations and fittings are available by appointment only on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Contact: (770) 292-2029.
There’s help and understanding in store for new mothers and breast cancer survivors at Northside Hospital-Forsyth.

Modeled after the success of the location in the hospital’s main campus in Atlanta, A Woman’s Place offers maternity and oncology essentials.

Among them are nursing bras and breast-feeding pillows for new mothers, and prosthesis and mastectomy bras for breast cancer survivors.

“It’s a private, very soothing setting,” said Beth Allen, manager of A Woman’s Place. “It’s the same quality service we offer in Atlanta and it’s in a one-on-one consultation room.”

Located in the hospital’s women’s center, the local store is small. But as demand increases, Allen expects it to eventually rival the 1,700-square-foot site on the Atlanta campus, complete with wigs and a full lactation center.

“In the future, we’ll be able to offer the full breadth of products,” she said. “It’s two rooms now that we’re using and ... we try to make it a very relaxing and calming space that’s decorated nicely.”

The Atlanta location opened in 1998. Allen said Northside was one of the first hospitals in the country to offer post-recovery products.

“There wasn’t anybody else that was doing the full comprehensive package,” she said “There wasn’t anyone in the country that was doing what we were doing. And now there are a lot of hospitals that have emulated the same model.”

Northside staff members study which products best meet patient needs, carry all major vendors and do the legwork on screening products. That’s why the Atlanta campus has built such trust among its patients, Allen said.

But more than the products sold, she said, the women have a personal connection to the hospital and staff.

Reita Snipes, a certified mastectomy fitter, has worked at the Atlanta location since the beginning and will help man the Forsyth site.

She makes the daily drive from her home in Dahlonega to offer breast cancer survivors two things she didn’t have when first diagnosed — understanding and compassion.

“I was fitted in the back of a crafts store for my prosthesis, my first one,” she said. “[A customer’s] mannerism changes immediately when I tell them I’m a survivor.

“Because when you’re going through this, that just makes a difference because you know somebody knows how you really feel.”

With the Internet, women have the option of shopping online for similar products.

For Allen and Snipes, however, personal contact, making sure products fit and feel right, and learning how to care for and properly use them are features a customer can’t add to an online shopping cart.

“So many women will tell us it is so nice to have the education along with the products so they really understand and they know what their options are,” Allen said. “It’s the continuity of care. It’s so basic to make sure you’re extending the care past the primary surgery.”

Allen said Snipes is an inspiration to her and the women who’ve sought her out over the years.

For Snipes, it’s a job she loves doing.

“When they’ve had a mastectomy, as I very well know, you just feel broken,” she said. “And a lot of people, when they come to me, that’s the way they come in.

“But when I’m able to put a smile on their face and put them back together again, that’s very rewarding.”