Lakeside Medical Center ending newborn delivery unit

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BELLE GLADE, Fla. — Lakeside Medical Center near Belle Glade is ending its labor and delivery unit.

The change leaves the closest option for pregnant women about 25 miles east at Palms West Hospital near Royal Palm Beach.

Lakeside Medical Center is a big part of health care for people who live in the western communities of Palm Beach County.

Officials said the decision was made due to a sharp drop in hospital deliveries. They said more pregnant women are traveling to central Palm Beach County metro areas to deliver their newborns.

The Palm Beach County Health Care District, which operates the Lakeside Medical Center, said it was taking steps to help moms-to-be.

WPTV

Tammy Jackson-Moore explains why she still believes adequate services will be available for pregnant women in West Palm Beach County despite changes at Lakeside Medical Center.

This includes providing 24/7 midwifery coverage, improving antenatal care for women, and providing an emergency ambulance service for the mother and the baby at Palms West Hospital.

“I was a little upset when I heard about it, but I started looking at some of the factors, and then some of the things that we have in place to make sure that the mothers in our hospital – and ready to give birth – we are able to provide that service to them,” said Tammy Jackson-Moore, Palm Beach County Health Care District Board Member. “I wouldn’t be sitting on the board if I thought we wouldn’t be able to take care of the mother and baby if she showed up at the hospital.”

Emergency services will still be available at Lakeside Medical Center for women in labor, but the official birthing unit is disappearing.

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