A cause for celebration at Golden Hospital in the maternity unit.

The Golden and District Hospital has recently seen the arrival of new equipment in

Perinatal Committee

Special to the Star

Christmas came early this year for the maternity unit at the Golden and District Hospital with the arrival a brand new External Foetal Health Monitor, infant warmer and resuscitator, and a new maternity/delivery bed this fall.

“The new equipment delivers state of the art monitoring for mom and babies, and the new bed provides a more comfortable experience for moms during labour and delivery,” says Christine Bailey, Patient Care Co-ordinator at the Golden and District Hospital.

“Physicians and staff at the hospital are committed to providing safe and quality care to families in the maternity wing and throughout the site.”

The monitor tracks how an unborn baby is doing during labour and delivery, by recording the baby’s heartbeat and measuring the strength of contractions. The device is wireless and waterproof, which means moms-to-be are free to walk around, move, and labour in the shower while baby’s health is monitored.

The maternity bed is in the delivery room and can be converted to suit a labouring mom’s needs and features a “squatting” or “pushing” bar.

The infant warmer and resuscitator is a piece of emergency equipment used to provide care to newborns that may have complications following delivery.

Instrumental in getting this new equipment to Golden were Health Services Administrator Erica Phillips, and the Perinatal Committee at the Golden Hospital.

“Erica takes requests from all the hospital’s departments to the East Kootenay Capital Equipment Committee and works to ensure Golden has the equipment needed.” says Bailey.

“Through feedback from the maternity care nurses a request for the delivery bed, warmer and resuscitator, and wireless monitoring device was submitted. For maternity nurses, it is a privilege to accompany a family through the biggest transition of their life. To do that with as much comfort as possible, with brand new equipment, is really wonderful.”

The Golden Hospital’s maternity wing is made up of two rooms: the labour and delivery room and an observation room where moms are assessed prior to being admitted. The observation room is equipped as a labour room and can be used if the main delivery room is occupied. On average, 80 – 90 babies are born a year at the Golden and District Hospital.

The Perinatal Committee ensures the maternity care provided to the community of Golden follows best practices and quality directives.

“Health care is constantly changing and improving. The Perinatal Committee ensures those changes and improvements are implemented locally.” explains Bailey, who is also the committee chair.

Members of the committee rotate depending on availability and work schedules.

“For example, one of our nurses may be on maternity leave, and then a colleague can step in for a while” explains Bailey.

Currently the committee is made up of Dr. Acton, Dr. Larsen-Soles, Dr. Virginia Clarke, Public Health Nurses Anne Hooper-Johnston and Lesley Stewart, Golden and District Site Manager Mary Lessing-Turner, Registered Nurses Pamela Michener, Cara Newbury, Jeanette McCarron, and Lynette Parish. Health Services Administrator Erica Phillips and Pharmacist Louise Vaile attend meetings on an ad hoc basis. The committee also includes a member of the public, Rebecca Malaka, who is completing her doula certification via the College of the Rockies.