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New service provides direct emergency care access for expectant mothers in the community

(LYNWOOD, Calif. – March 2, 2022) – St. Francis Medical Center, a member of Prime Healthcare, is pleased to announce its new Obstetrical Emergency Department (OB ED). Located in the hospital’s Family Life Center, the OB ED augments the comprehensive maternity services provided by the medical center for expectant mothers in the community.

St. Francis’ OB ED is equipped with nine triage beds staffed by board-certified obstetricians and certified labor and delivery nurses experienced in treating high-risk pregnancies. These specially trained clinicians provide evaluations, assessments and medical screening exams for pregnant women who need immediate care.

St. Francis Medical Center CEO Lawrence Barnard underscored the importance of the new OB ED, citing the significant gap in services in the area. He said, “The next closest OB EDs are 14 and 21 miles away, in Pasadena and Fountain Valley – too far if you are having an obstetrical emergency. We are committed to removing barriers to care for our Southeast Los Angeles community, which has consistently faced health care access challenges.”

Barnard emphasized that St. Francis Medical Center’s OB ED helps to ensure that expectant mothers receive timely, specialized treatment by providers experienced in managing obstetrical emergencies. He noted, “It is an essential part of our full range of maternity services, which are centralized in our Family Life Center for added convenience for our patients.”

In addition to enhancing emergency care access for maternity patients in the community, the OB ED offers added reassurance for expectant mothers who may be coping with ongoing health concerns. Conditions such as diabetes, obesity and hypertension can lead to complications and premature births. The OB ED is available to immediately respond to the compound issues that can arise during pregnancy because of chronic ailments.

St. Francis Medical Center delivers more than 3,000 babies each year and is recognized for its comprehensive maternity care services. St. Francis Interim Chief Nursing Officer Kristin Christophersen, DNP, MBA, RN, FACHE, said, “Our Family Life Center includes an experienced team of obstetricians, anesthesiologists and specialty-trained nurses; a high-risk pregnancy program; a level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit; and a partnership with nationally recognized CHOC/UCI Health that provides neonatologists, nurses, and respiratory and occupational therapists to meet the unique needs of premature infants and newborns requiring specialized care. Our OB ED is another important service available to support expectant mothers in our community.”

St. Francis Medical Center’s OB ED is available to women who are at least 20 weeks pregnant. Women at this stage of pregnancy who feel they are having an OB emergency may come directly to the St. Francis Medical Center Family Life Center at 3630 E. Imperial Highway in Lynwood. For more information contact (310) 900-8900 or visit www.stfrancismedicalcenter.com.

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