Avera Medical Minute: Having a baby during the pandemic
Having a baby during the pandemic has challenged Hannah Entenman and her husband to adjust their plans with the arrival of their baby Theo. Visitors understand they'll need to wait to meet him face to face.
Entenman still feels the support of friends and family. "Lots of porch drop-offs and that's, that's great for now. And it's allowed us to kind of just focus inward and establish our little family," said Entenman.
Expecting a baby certainly gives parents a lot to prepare for. Protecting everyone from a virus adds another perspective.
"And every time we talked with our midwife team, it was a little different. So they definitely worked really hard to keep us in the know. But at the end of the day, their main I guess advice was just call before you come in because it had been changing so frequently," said Entenman.
The goal is to keep mom and baby protected while still celebrating a new life. "Everyone on the team was just doing everything in their power to make the experience as normal as possible. And there was a lot of reassurance about all the precautions that they were taking," said Entenman.
Avera OBGYN Dr. Kimberlee McKay says while other department can re-schedule procedures and surgeries, babies continue to arrive on their timetable.
"I don't know what you guys in the region were doing nine months ago but it has been very, very busy," said Dr. McKay.
Changes have been made to protect everyone. "I just tell patients you know what you need to stay in your room, which so we've had to be a little bit more creative in terms of how we help people achieve that movement that helps them progressive labor," said Dr. McKay.
Babies are no longer together in common areas. "The newborn nursery is not a place where we want this commingling of patients anymore and so babies stay in your room with you now," said Dr. McKay.
And if Mom does test positive for COVID-19, protections are in place to keep everyone safe. Each Mom and baby have a lot of support.
"What hasn't changed is you're still there with someone that you love nurses who are trained in breastfeeding and labor support and all those things that we've done, always to help bring moms, to keep mom safe and labor and to bring babies into the world," said Dr. McKay.
"Don't be afraid to reach out and ask every single question that you have. I would say our providers were super on the ball with getting back to us," said Entenman.
When it comes to Avera labor and delivery floor, things are not likely to slow down, as plans for a pandemic baby boom in nine months.