Hank Streitfeld, M.D., someone to remember

Sometimes we remember people because their names make a big public splash.  Others are remembered as much for their good work as by their names.  The work, like the ripples of a pebble, continues, even if the moment of first impact isn't registered.

Hank Streitfeld, M.D., died on April 26, 2011.  He was a beloved Berkeley Obstetrician/Gynecologist who pioneered ideas that many parents in the Bay Area and across the country now take for granted.  It’s hard to imagine that there was a time when prenatal education, nutritional counseling, and preparation for breastfeeding were not part of standard medical care for pregnant women.  Hank’s practice was one of the first to include classes for parents and extended visits with nurse practitioners as routine. When midwives were considered outside the norm of medical practice, Hank collaborated with them and provided back up. Since not every parent-to-be was in his practice, he shared his wisdom by writing a monthly column in Parents’ Press for many years--long before well written information about pregnancy was available to everyone online. Yes, there was a time before Berkeley Parents' Network didn't offer advice and recommendations.

I knew Hank Streitfeld as a colleague, a friend, and as the man who handed me my first born son after a very long labor.  Hank was sweet, funny, smart, a great doctor and a mensch. He will be missed.