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The difference you can make when you're all for health.

Hospital care for moms and babies fills community need

Jefferson Hospital's 2012-2013 Community Health Needs Assessment showed a critical lack of hospital-based women's health and obstetrical services in its immediate service area, southern Allegheny County and Washington County, about 15 miles south of Pittsburgh.

In 2014, Highmark made a delivery of its own to these underserved communities. It supported a new Women's Health Center and a new labor and delivery unit at Allegheny Health Network's Jefferson Hospital. It was the first obstetrics unit to be built in the region in 34 years. This was an opportunity to build a better, healthier experience from the ground up.

Highmark makes it easier to access skilled, caring doctors and nurses; living proof that 1,000 new babies can be a "special delivery" — especially when delivered close to home.

Highmark supports local birthing center — 1,000 babies and counting

Jefferson Hospital's new labor and delivery unit was built with help from Highmark during a time when a dozen obstetrics departments in western Pennsylvania had closed their doors, leaving women with very few places to receive quality maternity services.

"Women in labor were going to Uniontown or West Virginia hospitals because they didn't want to worry about sitting in Pittsburgh traffic and the possibility of delivering on the side of the highway," said Dr. David Logan, Jefferson Hospital's medical director of obstetrics.

The new labor and delivery unit uses the latest infant care technology. In just 17 months, Jefferson Hospital had delivered 1,000 newborns — double the original expectation.

Mothers and mothers-to-be can:

  • Enjoy spacious surroundings and bright décor in their birthing suites
  • Often stay in the same room throughout labor, delivery and recovery
  • Bond with their new baby in a family-centered environment

Health improvement relies on local services

"In this region, we help many women, some with serious health risks such as obesity, diabetes and drug addiction," said Dr. Logan. "Many of my patients deal with transportation issues, poverty and mental health issues — all of which can make it hard to get help when health care isn't nearby."

Thanks to Highmark's support, the AHN Women's Health Center is now seeing 125 women a day. These women may receive:

  • Cancer screenings
  • Gynecological exams
  • Surgical procedures
  • Prenatal care

There is also a triage area exclusively for emergency cases involving pregnant women.

"Previously, many women were getting little or no prenatal care. The Women's Health Center leads to better health outcomes for women and babies," said Dr. Logan. "They might not have gotten the care they needed if their only option was to go downtown."

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