In The News

West Chester Hospital to add maternity unit

July 9, 2014  |  West Chester Hospital
West Chester Hospital

Journal News


West Chester Hospital plans to open a full-service maternity unit and nursery in 2015, the hospital announced Tuesday.

The addition of maternity services to the West Chester Hospital campus will complement existing women’s services and programs, including mammography and a bone health clinic, hospital officials said. No cost estimate for the project was available Tuesday.

“Adding maternity services is a logical step in the expansion of offerings at West Chester Hospital,” said Dr. Kevin Joseph, president and chief executive officer, in a press release.

The hospital, which opened in 2009, is part of the UC Health network that has been adding services in the growing communities north of Cincinnati, including West Chester and Liberty townships and the city of Mason.

“I am very proud of our organization’s reputation as a provider of exceptional patient experiences and advanced medical care,” Joseph said. “Our decision to build a maternity unit was made in response to countless community members who wish to experience the same level of care and service during their labor, delivery, and post-partum stay. I could not be more excited to provide this new resource to our community.”

The new maternity unit and nursery are currently under construction on the third floor of the hospital’s patient care tower, said Debra Titlebaum, hospital spokeswoman.

The maternity unit — scheduled to open mid-year 2015 — will include delivery suites, Caesarean-section operating rooms and triage rooms, standard and isolation bassinets and several private family gathering areas. An adjacent nursery will function as a Level IIB neonatal intensive care unit for providing specialty care to ill newborns.

Final plans for the maternity unit, including number of beds and square footage, haven’t been decided yet, Titlebaum said. But she said the labor, delivery and recovery will all occur in one room.

“It’s so much more soothing … when the surroundings become familiar,” Titlebaum said, adding the hospital stay can be from 24 hours to four days. “It’s a much more comforting environment.”

Titlebaum said the addition of maternity services in West Chester will “absolutely” add jobs at the hospital, which already has approximately 600 employees, including skilled nurses for specialized care in the nursery. But she said the staffing levels haven’t been determined yet.

“Getting closer to being a full-line hospital, not having maternity was a gap,” Titlebaum said. “This allows prospective families to have a choice.”

For years 2006-2010, Butler County had an average 4,966 births per year, according to the latest figures from Ohio Department of Health.

Maternity services are also offered at Mercy Health Fairfield Hospital; Fort Hamilton Hospital; Atrium Medical Center in Middletown; and McCullough-Hyde Memorial Hospital in Oxford.

Bethesda Butler Hospital in Hamilton, owned by the TriHealth network, doesn’t offer maternity services.

“Labor and delivery services are not currently included in our most recent expansion plans for Bethesda Butler Hospital, but it is something we may consider as we grow our patient base in the community,” said spokesman Joe Kelley.