C-section suite at Sanford Bemidji keeps families together

"Instead of splitting up, the new operating room will allow for the recovery of mom and the baby together.”

A doctor prepares for a caesarean section at Sanford Bemidji C-suite

BEMIDJI, Minn. — In a time of need, a familiar face, a welcoming voice and a soothing touch can provide necessary reassurance. And the new cesarean section surgery room on the third floor of the Sanford Bemidji Medical Center offers those qualities.

Annually, about 25 percent of all babies delivered at the medical center enter the world via cesarean section. Some of those surgeries are planned while others are emergency procedures. In the past, the C-section deliveries had to be performed by surgeons near the emergency room on the main level, but a new operating room, the “C-Suite,” is constructed inside the labor and delivery unit. Beginning June 19, the mothers who previously had to be transported downstairs for their deliveries will be able to have their babies in a familiar setting and be surrounded with friendly faces.

“Your same nurses will be taking care of you so you won’t have to work with another nursing team,” said registered nurse Bethany Anderson. “The faces you have seen and the people you have trusted your entire time will still be with you.”

A benefit to opening a new nursery on third floor about two years ago was the creation of space for the C-Suite. Once that space was available, the push to complete the project began, said Mark Colliton, M.D., one of the obstetrics-gynecology surgeons who’s elated with the new facility.

“I’ve been practicing here for 25 years and we’ve waited a long time for this new operating room,” Dr. Colliton said. “It took a lot of planning because we wanted to make sure that we did things right from the patient’s standpoint. The new OR (operating room) will make everybody’s job easier and we will be able to more effectively perform a C-Section and help the patient.”

Every second counts

When an emergency cesarean section is necessary, every second is important and being able to transport the mother across the hall instead of down two flights to surgeons can be a life-saver.

“When we are dealing with an emergency unplanned C-Section, we have to move very quickly from the delivery room to the operating room,” Dr. Colliton said. “In those situations, every minute counts.”

“In an emergency, a faster approach is better, and now we don’t have to go downstairs,” added Tamara Supinski, the in-patient manager. “We do many high-risk surgeries and it was important to have this facility to help with those surgeries. Now we don’t have to work around the other surgeons and their schedules and (by doing the cesarean section surgeries at the C-Suite) it opens the main operating room downstairs so they can schedule their own surgeries.”

“The new operating room will cut our time in half, and time is so important,” Anderson said. “In an emergency situation you need to get the baby out right away and you need to provide whatever they need right away. The new room will allow us to do that by eliminating a bunch of variables.”

Mom and baby stay together

After the birth, the mother and the baby also will experience immediate benefits.

“Before we had the C-Suite the new baby recovered from the C-Section in the upstairs nursery while the mother recovered from her surgery downstairs,” Dr. Colliton said. “But now, instead of splitting up, the new operating room will allow for the recovery of mom and the baby together.”

Where mom can provide that familiar face, the welcoming voice and the soothing touch.

“The new C-Suite is a ‘win-win’ for everybody,” Supinski added.

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Posted In Bemidji, Gynecology, Health Information, News, Women's

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