Delivering a baby in the middle of the COVID-19 health crisis wasn’t exactly on first-time mother Emily Lusk’s radar when she became pregnant. Emily always knew the arrival of her daughter would be memorable for her and her husband – and she was right. Little Mia’s birth story was truly unforgettable – complete with full-blown tornado warnings during their first night at the Family Birth Place at St. Elizabeth Edgewood.
“It was a little bit of ‘is this really happening?!’ moment for us,” says Emily. “Our OB came into the bathroom in full PPE gear to check on us as the tornado sirens were going off. We had to laugh – what else could we do?”
As a special events coordinator at St. Elizabeth Foundation, Emily had high expectations for her labor and delivery at the Family Birth Place. With firsthand knowledge of the compassionate, dedicated care of the St. Elizabeth team, she was excited to experience it herself.
Although Emily’s delivery had elements that she hadn’t dreamed of – including extra COVID-19 safety precautions and tornado warnings – the experience of delivering her daughter at the Family Birth Place exceeded her expectations.
“I felt so safe and taken care of the entire time,” says Emily. “The level of precaution and attention was incredible. It felt like the pandemic would hinder our birth experience, but it truly made it more intimate and collaborative.”
Emily and her husband felt comfortable and reassured from the moment they arrived at the Family Birth Place. Even though the COVID-19 restrictions changed a few of their plans – including having visitors at the hospital, which is currently not allowed for safety reasons – the first-time parents found the silver lining of welcoming their newborn daughter during such an uncertain time.
“There was only our doctor and our nurse in the room during our baby’s delivery,” says Emily. “It was so nice to have that moment be so quietly personal – it was exactly what we needed and wanted.”
Emily and her husband praised the professionalism, compassion and genuine kindness of each nurse, doctor and support associates who helped them during their stay. Emily even gave a special shout-out to their “unsung hero.”
“Our environmental services associate made a point to have a light, fun conversation with us about her baby grandson and the joy we had ahead of us,” says Emily. “That personal connection heightened our experience – and it was so nice to talk to someone about a shared experience instead of just the virus.”
Commitment to patient safety remains a top priority at St. Elizabeth to help ensure a safe and healthy delivery for you and your baby.
“Our team has implemented additional safety measures to ensure our patients are protected, and we continue to make adjustments and improvements,” says Ellee Humphrey, System Director of Women’s and Children’s Services at St. Elizabeth Healthcare. “Our team is committed to thorough cleaning and hand washing, temperature checks and wearing masks to ensure a safe environment. In addition, all moms who are scheduled for induction, C-section or are admitted to the hospital are now tested for COVID-19.”
The Lusks are settling into life as a family of three and feeling thankful each day that St. Elizabeth was a part of little Mia’s safe arrival.
“Our nurses even sent us a thank you card,” says Emily. “That extra touch made our experience even more powerful.”
For more information on COVID-19 safety precautions at St. Elizabeth Healthcare, visit the COVID-19 information hub or call 1-800-737-7900.