Welcome, Emily Isabelle: First baby born in new Labour & Delivery Unit

Sara, Chris and Emily Isabelle with their Labour & Delivery team

Sara and Chris were the first parents to have their baby in Mount Sinai’s new, state-of-the-art Slaight Family Labour & Delivery Unit – a big change from when they had their first daughter here three years ago

Not every birth at Mount Sinai is greeted with applause from the labour and delivery team, but Emily Isabelle got a standing ovation for her first appearance.

When Sara and Chris had their first daughter at Mount Sinai Hospital three years ago, it was a thrilling experience marked by excellent care. Their dated labour and delivery room, however, left something to be desired.

So Sara was delighted to learn that she might be able to give birth to her second child in Mount Sinai’s new Slaight Family Labour & Delivery Unit. A week before the facility opened on February 24, Sara told her medical team that she was planning to wait until the new unit was open before giving birth.

“It made my nurse laugh,” Sara said, smiling.  “She told me, ‘you don’t have a say in when that happens’.”

So when Sara’s water broke and her labour began on the night of February 23, she was almost disappointed: “I thought, darn, I’m going to miss the new unit by just a couple of hours!”

But when moving time came the next morning, she was ready to be the first to give birth in the new unit. Everyone was thrilled that she chose to make the move. 

“We left our bags and coats and everything, and rushed to the new unit,” said Chris.

“Being wheeled up was an experience,” Sara recalled. “I hadn’t had an epidural and I was in labour. Everyone was so excited that they started applauding us – it was a bit surreal!” 

But the new suite made the trip worthwhile.

“It’s so bright, with natural light,” Sara said. “Everything is so modern and updated, including the décor.”

Chris was quick to point out a big difference in the amenities, including the TVs.  “The old room had a ten-inch box TV, now we have a big flat-screen,” he noted.

But their focus was not on the new TVs.  “My doctor was excited – he said they’d been planning this for ten years, so he wanted his patient to have the first baby in the new birthing suites,” said Sara. “There was another family that wanted to be first, so it became a bit of a friendly competition.”

It was a competition that Sara won, giving birth to Emily Isabelle at 10:38 a.m. 

“The difference between the new unit and the old one is really like night and day,” said Chris, proudly holding his new daughter. “This is great.”

With 19 spacious birthing suites featuring windows and plenty of space for partners, showers and soaker tubs for pain management and state-of-the-art operating rooms and equipment, it’s a real improvement.  This follows the opening of the new David and Stacey Cynamon Mother & Baby Unit in 2012.

“I am incredibly proud that the patients in our flagship program now have a new space that reflects the excellent level of care that they receive here at Mount Sinai,” said Dr. Mathew Sermer, Obstetrician and Gynaecologist-in-Chief at Mount Sinai Hospital.

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Mount Sinai Hospital Foundation

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