Woman’s Hospital Enhances Critical Care Services for Pregnant Patients and Babies During COVID-19 Pandemic

April 06, 2020

BATON ROUGE, LA - As the area leader in caring for women and infants, Woman’s Hospital has a unique focus in caring for these patients during the COVID-19 pandemic and is prepared to be a referral source for other facilities seeking to transfer pregnant patients with COVID-19.

Woman’s has opened a separate hospital unit for patients with COVID-19 infection. This unit is fully capable of caring for patients and their newborns during and after delivery. This unit also has a separate nursing and medical staff that does not cross over into the regular labor and delivery units. We are strictly following CDC guidelines using appropriate PPE and infection control measures. The 12-bed unit has the capacity to expand to a 24-bed unit if needed.

“This isolation unit allows us to provide the same safe and excellent quality of care to our patients who are experiencing COVID-19 infection, while preventing exposure to our other patients,” said Barbara Griffith, MD, president & CEO of Woman’s Hospital. “We want our expecting moms to be reassured that Woman’s is taking all of the necessary precautions to keep them safe.” 

Woman’s also recently added critical care physicians to the medical staff in order to enhance services to support patients in the rare case that serious illness occurs. These providers are experienced in caring for the most complex cases and work closely with our maternal-fetal medicine specialists and a patient’s OB-GYN.

The hospital is seeing more critically ill infants being transferred to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit as regional hospitals are focused on caring for adult patients. These fragile babies often require significant medical care and ventilators to assist with breathing.

On March 30, the hospital opened its own COVID-19 drive-thru testing site for pregnant patients with symptoms of respiratory illness in their third trimester at the Woman’s Center for Wellness. Patients must have a doctor’s order to be tested.

“Right now women are asking a lot of questions because they’re concerned and they’re worried,” says Pamela Simmons, DO, maternal-fetal medicine specialist for Woman’s Hospital. “The best thing they can do is keep themselves healthy, and to know that Woman’s is here to provide the absolute best care for them when they need it.”

Woman’s is hosting weekly Q&A with OB-GYNs and maternal-fetal medicine physicians on its facebook page. The Woman’s Hospital website is also being updated constantly as information evolves. Patients and their loved ones are encouraged to visit womans.org for the most up-to-date information regarding COVID-19 policies.