South Georgia Medical Center was recognized by the March of Dimes and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) for reducing the number of early elective inductions and cesarean deliveries. The hospital recently met the criteria to qualify for this distinction, which includes achieving a rate for elective deliveries before 39 completed weeks of pregnancy of 5 percent or lower and having policies in place to prevent such deliveries.
“We are delighted to receive this commemorative banner for adhering to standards that directly benefit the health of babies in this community,” said Dr. Hank Moseley, Chief of the OB-GYN service at South Georgia Medical Center. “The last few weeks of pregnancy are extremely important for the baby’s brain and lung development, among other organs. This is a significant achievement.”According to SGMC Neonatologist Dr. Corne Maydell, since more mothers are reaching a full term gestation of at least 39 weeks, SGMC has seen a decrease in the number of babies admitted to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit for problems related to being born early, which can include respiratory problems, low blood sugar, and jaundice most commonly.
Peggy Knight, Associate Unit Director of Women and Children’s Services, states “The Labor and Delivery staff works carefully with our team of providers to help offer a positive birth experience for all our families. Moms who wait until the 39 week mark do tend to have a more satisfying experience. There is also a decreased incidence of cesarean sections for moms greater than 39 weeks. We are excited to receive this recognition promoting the overall well-being of mom and baby.”
SGMC CEO Ross Berry echoed the overall sentiment, stating quality is a top priority for the organization and applauded the leadership from physicians and staff to achieve this recognition. Reducing early elective deliveries and improving the health of moms and babies is just one of the key focus areas of the March of Dimes and their “Healthy Babies Are Worth the Wait” campaign. Even babies born just a few weeks early have higher rates of hospitalization and illness than full-term infants.
SGMC delivers approximately 2,000 babies annually. For more information about SGMC’s Birthplace, visit www.sgmc.org/birthplace.