Alaska community hospital stops labor and delivery services earlier than expected

Due to staffing issues, Sitka (Alaska) Community Hospital ended labor and delivery services Jan. 5, which is three months earlier than originally planned, according to the Sitka Sentinel.

The community hospital announced plans in December to transition labor and delivery services to Sitka-based Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium/Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital in April 2018. The hospital decided to transition services because SCH did not deliver enough babies to maintain a safe program, according to SCH CEO Rob Allen.

"To ensure competency of providers, the industry standard dictates that a team of doctors should deliver at least 100 babies a year. For the last several years, there have been 30 to 40 births a year at SCH. This is why I made the recommendation last year to end labor and delivery at the hospital," Mr. Allen said.

The move to end labor and delivery services will impact five patients who have due dates between Friday and March 31, according to the report.

The hospital will still provide prenatal and postnatal care.

More articles on patient flow:
Care New England will transition Memorial Hospital to outpatient center, avoid closure
Ohio hospital evacuates several babies after reports of smoke
Closed Missouri hospital plans to reopen as psychiatric facility after resolving issues with CMS

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