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Saint Vincent Celebrates Opening of New AHN Women and Infants Center

Friday, May 10, 2019

Officials from Saint Vincent Hospital, Allegheny Health Network and Highmark Health were joined by community leaders and elected officials in Erie today to officially cut the ribbon to its new AHN Women and Infants Center at Saint Vincent.  The Center will provide expectant women and families with access to state-of-the-art clinical care in a beautiful facility designed to maximize their comfort and experience.

“What better way to kick off the Mother’s Day weekend in Erie than to celebrate the beginning of a new era in women and infants health excellence for this community,” said Cynthia Hundorfean, President and CEO of Allegheny Health Network.  “At Highmark Health and AHN, we are excited to open yet another beautiful new facility that will help us deliver the remarkable experience that our patients deserve.”   

Located on the hospital’s fifth floor, the new $9.5 million center is part of a $130 million investment being made by AHN and Highmark Health to further expand and enhance the services Saint Vincent offers to the greater Erie region.   

“Providing exceptional, compassionate care for women and infants has been a hallmark of Saint Vincent’s legacy for more than a century, and we could not be more excited to open the doors to an amazing new facility that will help us to carry on that tradition for generations to come,” said Chris Clark, DO, MHA, President of Saint Vincent Hospital.  “This new center was designed with considerable input from both our caregivers and our patients, and the result is a truly patient-centered facility and level of care that is second to none in Erie for expectant moms and their babies.”  

Expectant mothers arriving to deliver their babies are welcomed into one of three new private patient triage rooms, which are all designed for patient assessment, observation and comfort.  The hospital also added five new ante-partum rooms for high-risk patients needing hospitalization prior to their child’s delivery.

When they are ready to deliver, moms will do so in beautiful new Labor and Delivery Suites, which feature bathrooms with showers outfitted with special massaging shower heads.

“Our new Labor and Delivery Suites are  soothing and calming,” said Kathy Vitale, BSN, RN, MPA, Director of the AHN Women and Infants Center at Saint Vincent.  “We designed the suites to include jetted showers, for example, that can alleviate some discomfort and assist our patients with relaxing as they go through labor.”

The Labor and Delivery unit also features more advanced in-room monitors and a new, private area in which nurses and physicians can collaborate and develop plans of care for both healthy and high-risk patients.   

Following the birth, new moms and their babies recover in the Center’s post-partum rooms, which feature beautifully tiled bathrooms and a sleeper sofa that makes overnight stays more comfortable for loved ones.  

Premature infants and babies with medical issues receive advanced, expert care from the clinical specialists in the hospital’s 21-bed Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.

The Women and Infants Center has been equipped with an advanced security system to assure the safety of women and their babies at all times while receiving care.

“At Saint Vincent, and across the entire footprint at Allegheny Health Network, we have made many significant investments over the past five years in programs and capabilities for women’s health care at every stage of life,” said Allan Klapper, MD, Chair of the AHN Women and Infants Institute. “The new Women and Infants Center at Saint Vincent is just the latest example of our commitment to getting health care right for women and families in every community we serve.”

At a time when many health systems are closing or consolidating obstetrics programs, AHN currently delivers babies at four of its hospitals, including Saint Vincent, Forbes Hospital, Jefferson Hospital and West Penn Hospital, and will add a fifth program at its new Wexford Hospital when it opens in 2021.

Last December, the hospital opened the new Saint Vincent Breast Imaging Center and the AHN Women’s Center for Comprehensive Health Care at Saint Vincent, a facility that integrates many of Saint Vincent’s services for women in one convenient location at the Hardner Building on Myrtle Street.

Expectant moms who would like a private tour  of the new Women and Infants Center are encouraged to call 814-452-5255.