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Here’s what you need to know if you’re giving birth during the pandemic

A local OBGYN wants to reassure parents that they are safe when it comes to delivering their baby in the hospital during a pandemic.
Published: Jan. 26, 2021 at 9:25 PM CST
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LAREDO, Tex. (KGNS) - Rather than going baby shopping and packing a hospital bag, expecting parents now have to prepare for their delivery during a pandemic.

There is a lot to consider, but one Laredo OBGYN shares what you can expect if you’re expecting.

“You hear in the news that the hospital is completely full and every bed occupied in the hospital is with a COVID patient,” said Dr. Dagoberto Gonzalez.

Will there be beds available? Do I need to go out of town? Will I be around COVID patients? These are just a few questions pregnant women have begun to ask others on social media.

“But what we need to tell pregnant patients is that labor and delivery and postpartum is completely separate from any COVID unit. we do not mix those patients together.”

Dr. Gonzalez delivers babies at Laredo Medical Center.

He wants to reassure parents that they are safe when it comes to delivering their baby in the hospital during a pandemic.

“Don’t feel that you’re going to get COVID by going to the hospital. The emergency room has taken the proper precautions,” he said.

When a mother arrives at LMC, she’ll go to the labor and delivery unit where she’ll get her temperature taken, get tested for COVID-19 and be asked screening questions.

She’ll undergo a rapid triage and then immediately go to the labor and delivery area, which is on a separate floor from COVID patients.

Pregnant women that test positive or show symptoms will be triaged and give birth in a separate area. The nurses are different as well.

Only one person is allowed in the delivery room, and they must wear a mask at all times.

All medical personnel and patients wear masks before, during and after.

If a COVID patient needs a C-section, the procedure is performed in the same operating room as non-COVID C-sections but, “the entire operating room shuts down until the proper precautions are taken to sterilize the room,” Dr. Gonzalez said.

Some other questions Dr. Gonzalez has gotten: can a woman get a tubal ligation procedure done after delivery? Yes, if she is negative for COVID.

Can baby boys get circumcised? Yes, they can.

For mothers with COVID-19, Dr. Gonzalez recommends sending the baby home with a family member who is negative. She can breastfeed but should wear a mask the entire time.

As for Doctors Hospital, moms-to-be enter through the main hospital entrance and will be screened and tested for COVID-19.

One support person is allowed as long as they are negative for the virus.

Maternity patients who are positive will go to an area that is completely separate from the labor and delivery section, and in this case will not be allowed any visitors.

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