KDMC delivers new baby facility

Published 7:30 pm Monday, May 17, 2010

Not having the right look is bad for business.

King’s Daughters Medical Center has always had the staff, theskills and the tools to deliver babies, but not having the rightlooks has caused plenty of mothers to forego Brookhaven and travelto Jackson to give birth. Now, with the hospital’s LDRP (Labor,Delivery, Recovery, Postpartum) department fully renovated andrebuilt, KDMC officials are hoping to put a stop to the maternityexodus.

“People always talked about how nice the Jackson hospitals werebecause they had armoires and wooden floors, so we put our moneywhere our mouth is,” said Angie Williamson, an LDRP and nurserymanager at the hospital.

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Williamson has high hopes for KDMC’s LDRP department, which wasunveiled to the public Sunday afternoon in a grand opening tourthat showcased the approximately $2 million upgrade. It was thelast department to get a facelift in the three-year, $14 millionexpansion project that has spread modernity across the 46-year-oldfacility.

The new LDRP department features nine labor and delivery suites,a self-contained surgical suite for C-sections and a 24-hournursery. Each room has been customized to provide maximum comfortto admitted mothers, built more like bedrooms than hospital roomswith attractive flooring, adjustable lighting, private bathroomswith large garden bathtubs and painted a soothing, mute green.

The rooms were also built large so families can visitcomfortably, and each comes with a full-length couch so dad canstretch out and spend the night in style.

The LDRP rooms also contain the latest technology, including allthe necessary bed connections and computer monitors networked withthe rest of the hospital. Every tool and material needed to delivera baby is contained in the room, and mothers go all the way throughthe process – from admittance to birth to recovery – without everhaving to change rooms.

“It’s state of the art, and it’s absolutely beautiful,”Williamson said. “It’s what we needed to get us back where we needto be.”

KDMC Chief Development Officer Johnny Rainer said the new LDRPdepartment has the potential to boost services across the entirehospital. Labor and delivery services are classified as commercialhealth care, a service that allows the hospital to make money andoffset the profitless treatment of Medicaid and Medicarepatients.

“We deliver an average of 60 babies each month, and if we couldincrease our volume of deliveries to 75 babies each month, thatwould help the overall picture of the hospital,” Rainer said.”We’ve got four very, very good OB/GYNs and three excellentpediatricians, so remodeling and refurbishing their facilities is away of trying to keep that business here in our hospital.”

KDMC Chief Executive Officer Alvin Hoover said LDRP services canbe perpetual, which is why it was so important for the hospital toupgrade its labor and delivery care.

“A lot of the times, momma makes the health care decisions. Ifyou can get a new mom and she has a great experience in your LDRP,she’ll come back, and she’ll tell her friends and family, too,” hesaid. “LDRP is one of those front doors to the hospital.”

With Sunday’s LDRP grand opening, the hospital’s huge expansionproject is officially over. Hoover said there would be more,smaller renovations to come – such as upgrades to the lab andradiology department – but the major work is complete.

“This whole renovation was long overdue. You don’t ever want tolet your hospital fall behind the times,” he said. “What this hasallowed us to do is to catch up, and you can get as good a healthcare here as you can anywhere.”