New maternity unit opens in Calgary

Project cost $34 million and includes many upgrades tailored to new parents and parents-to-be

Health Minister Sarah Hoffman, new mother Victoria and Premier Rachel Notley cut the ribbon Friday at a new maternity care unit at the Peter Lougheed Centre. (Audrey Neveu/CBC)

A new maternity care unit for new and soon-to-be parents in the Calgary area opened Friday.

A provincial government news release says the redeveloped space in the Peter Lougheed Centre includes “60 new care spaces, including 36 private and semi-private postpartum beds, 11 labour and delivery beds, eight triage beds, five private antepartum beds and two C-section operating rooms.”

Included in the $34-million worth of upgrades are recovery spaces designed specifically for mothers of twins.

“Alberta moms and families deserve high-quality health care from dedicated care teams, before, during and after the miracle of birth,” said Health Minister Sarah Hoffman in the release.

“This redevelopment will help ensure expecting moms and newborn babies in southern Alberta have the care they need, where they need it and when they need it.”

There will also be negative pressure isolation rooms that will allow doctors and staff to care for patients with airborne infections such as tuberculosis, chicken pox or who are severely immunocompromised.

According to the government, the Peter Lougheed Centre supports a referral population of about 2.3 million people. In 2016-17, it performed 5,336 births, which included 78 sets of twins.

Here’s a breakdown of the new amenities within the unit:

  • 14 labour and delivery private rooms, including one isolation room.
  • 7 antepartum private rooms, including one isolation room.
  • 5 semi-private postpartum rooms.
  • 2 private postpartum isolation rooms.
  • 9 triage exam rooms, including one isolation room.
  • 3 triage observation beds.
  • 2 baby assessment rooms.
  • 12 private neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) rooms.
  • 6 multi-birth NICU rooms, including one isolation room.
  • 2 six-pod NICU rooms.
  • 5 on-call rooms for staff.
  • Office and staff spaces.
  • Mechanical upgrades.
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