SURREY – Expectant mothers delivering at Surrey Memorial Hospital will soon be receiving enhanced care thanks to a new agreement with anesthesiologists. Through collaborative discussions with the Department, we have reached an agreement to provide dedicated obstetrical anesthesiology services, which means that there will be a minimum of one anesthesiologist available for deliveries and another for surgeries at the hospital 24/7. This is in addition to the full complement of anesthesiologists who work scheduled shifts every day.
“Today’s announcement is great news for new mothers in the Surrey region,” said Health Minister Terry Lake. “We continue to stress the importance of putting patients at the centre of care and the dedicated obstetric anesthesiology service is reflective of the work Fraser Health, its physicians and staff are doing throughout the region to improve services and support patients.”
In addition, Fraser Health is pleased to announce it has recruited 13 new anesthesiologists at Surrey Memorial Hospital, bringing Department membership to 41 to support the expansion of services. Both the obstetrical anesthesiology program and the introduction of additional anesthesiologists to support surgeries are another step towards Surrey Memorial Hospital becoming a leading tertiary facility in the lower mainland.
“Welcoming a child into the world is one of the biggest moments in a parent’s life,” said Surrey-Cloverdale MLA Stephanie Cadieux. “Surrey mothers will welcome this enhanced care and be comforted to know they are in good hands with the exceptional staff at Surrey Memorial Hospital with dedicated obstetrical anesthesiology services.”
“This is about putting the patient first and providing the absolute best care to women delivering at Surrey Memorial Hospital,” said Michael Marchbank, president and CEO. “As the number of deliveries increased at this hospital, we identified dedicated obstetrical anesthesiology as a priority some time ago and have been working diligently with the physicians and staff to bring this service to Surrey Memorial.”
Surrey Memorial sees 4,300 births per year and it is important that expectant mothers receive the best possible care when they come to our hospital. For more than five years, Fraser Health has been working with the anesthesiology department to put patients first and implement the dedicated obstetrical anesthesia service through collaborative negotiations focused on the development of sustainable models for patient care.
“Our successful recruitment efforts will enable us to meet the demand for obstetrical, surgical and pain management services for patients, providing excellent care in a timely manner,” said Dr. Roy Morton, vice president, Medicine. “We’re pleased that the anesthesiology group is committed to the goal of continuing our journey of offering high quality, patient-centred care.”
The decision to bring dedicated obstetrical anesthesiology to Surrey Memorial was made in recognition that, while patients were receiving excellent care, there was room for improvement. As the number of deliveries continued to grow, it became a program Fraser Health needed to implement.
This new, expanded 24/7 service is unique to BC and expected to increase the number of epidurals provided to mothers delivering babies, improve the efficiency of the emergency and main operating rooms, and reduce wait times for elective surgeries.
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