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Pregnant patients at New York-Presbyterian hospitals will reportedly give birth alone amid coronavirus concerns

An outside view of the NewYorkPresbyterian Hospital where Russias Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Vitaly Ivanovich Churkin died in New York City on February 20, 2017.

Volkan Furuncu/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

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  • Pregnant patients giving birth in NewYork-Presbyterian’s hospitals will be alone and not allowed visitors for the foreseeable future to lessen the risk of coronavirus infection, The New York Post reported Sunday. 

  • Hospital authorities told staff that partners of mothers-to-be would be banned from labor and delivery rooms, according to a video briefing sent to staffers reported by the Post.

  • Hospitals in the tri-state area have ramped up their response to the highly contagious coronavirus to prevent infection among vulnerable patients and staff. 

  • Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Patients giving birth in NewYork-Presbyterian’s hospitals without their partners and not allowed visitors for the foreseeable future, according to The New York Post.

Hospital authorities who are seeking to confront the novel coronavirus outbreak announced on Sunday that partners of moms-to-be would be banned from labor and delivery rooms, according to a video sent to staffers reported by the Post.

Dr. Laura Forese, executive vice president and COO of the system, reportedly said in the video that they recognized it marked a “significant step” in attempting to lessen the risk of infection for new mothers, babies, and staff.

“At this time, no visitors including birthing partners and support persons are permitted for obstetric patients,” the NewYork-Presbyterian’s general visitation policy says. “We understand that this will be difficult for our patients and their loved ones, but we believe that this is a necessary step to promote the safety of our new mothers and children.”

Women, regardless of whether they have any symptoms, will be tested for the novel coronavirus when they are admitted to labor and delivery units, the Post reported. They will also have to wear face masks.

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The new rule comes after hospitals around the New York area, the US epicenter for coronavirus infections, instituted strict checks and ramped-up scrutiny on expecting parents and their partners. Connecticut mother Julie Melichar-Post told Insider that she and her husband were “thoroughly” screened upon her arrival to give birth at Connecticut’s Hartford Hospital. 

Nurses took the couples’ temperatures with a non-touch thermometer, asked if they had experienced any symptoms, traveled or came in contact with anyone who had been out of the country, or traveled domestically via plane, Melichar-Post said.

“Once we were deemed fit for entry, we were provided with a tag to put in our clothes that read “screened” with the date,” she added, saying that only one person was allowed in the room with no extra visitors. 

Despite the extra precautions and the virus spread, Melichar-Post said she had “a very positive experience” in the hospital while kept in a highly secured secluded area away from the ICU and ER.

The highly contagious coronavirus can be spread even if someone has no symptoms, which has caused concern among hospital officials who have zeroed in on visitors as potential virus carriers. 

On March 18, the New York Department of Health issued a guidance memo to end all visits to hospital patients “except when medically necessary (i.e. visitor is essential to the care of the patient) or for family members or legal representatives of patients in imminent end-of-life situations.” Those individuals would still be thoroughly screened and offered other communication alternatives, according to the memo. 

The shift to safely accommodate expectant mothers and their families is just one of the challenges facing New York-area hospitals, as the state asked med students and certified health care workers to volunteer in delivering care, and authorities considered turning spaces like Manhattan’s Jacob K. Javits Convention Center into a temporary hospital.

Read more:

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TV medical dramas are donating N95 masks, gowns, and gloves to hospitals over supply shortage in coronavirus fight

A human behavior expert explains 4 psychological reasons why people are panic buying items in bulk during the coronavirus pandemic

Read the original article on Insider

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