Wednesday, January 21, 2009

St. Luke’s opens mother/baby unit

Express Staff Writer

St. Luke’s Wood River Medical Center nurses Connie Connell, left, and Amy Downey, prepare Terra Hansen of Carey for delivery on Tuesday in the new commodious mother/baby Unit that is equipped with a lounging area for family, natural light, and natural woods. Photo by Willy Cook

St. Luke's Wood River Medical Center has opened a new mother/baby unit, funded by a $466,000 contribution from the St. Luke's Wood River Foundation, a $25,000 gift from the St. Luke's Volunteer Core plus $300,000 from the hospital's operating budget.

The project relocated the intensive-care unit rooms to the main patient floor to make room for two more birthing suites, a nursery and nurse station. This brings the hospital's labor and delivery rooms to six, in which the approximately 330 babies can be born each year. In recent years, that number has steadily increased, requiring the expansion.

"This remodel expands our facilities so that more families will be able to experience the entire birthing process, including labor, delivery and postpartum recovery, in a safe and comfortable place," said Dr. Joseph Rodriguez, obstetrician and gynecologist with St. Luke's.

The foundation will celebrate the completion of the mother/baby unit expansion on Friday, Jan. 23, at 1 p.m. with a behind-the-scenes tour of the facility.

"We are truly grateful to our donors. Their contributions to our unrestricted fund enabled our hospital to expand the mother/baby unit," said incoming foundation president Dr. Scott McLean.

For more information call Megan Thomas at the foundation office at 727-8444.

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