Bonner General Hospital to discontinue labor & delivery services
SANDPOINT, ID (CBS2) — On March 17 Bonner General Health’s Board of Directors announced the discontinuation of Bonner General Hospitals Labor and Delivery services, in part because of legislation Idaho continues to pass criminalizing physicians for providing care nationally recognized as the standard of care.
In a press release, hospital leaders said highly respected and talented physicians are leaving the state because of these laws, and replacing them will be “extraordinarily difficult.”
This means that expectant mothers will have to travel to 46 miles to the nearest hospital to have their babies.
“We have made every effort to avoid eliminating these services,” stated Ford Elsaesser, Bonner General Health’s Board President. “We hoped to be the exception, but our challenges are impossible to overcome now.”
The hospital cited other reasons for the closure, including loss of pediatrician coverage, low volumes and changing demographics.
The hospital says that as of May, it will no longer be able to provide consistent and reliable pediatric services and due to the low patient volume, and trouble attracting pediatric hospitalists.
The hospital says that going forward Bonner General will still provide women’s health services at Sandpoint Women’s Health but Sandpoint Women’s Health will not accept new OB patients as of March 17, 2023.
Bonner General leaders say they will try to continue deliveries through May 19, depending on staffing. After that, the Bonner General will coordinate care for OB patients from Sandpoint Women’s Health that are scheduled to deliver after May 19, according to a press release.
There is a referral list at bonnergeneral.org for Obstetric patients.
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