Labour and Delivery services returning to Norfolk General Hospital on November 21

(Dr. Jamie Szabo, Chief of Obstetrics (front right, with scissors), cuts the ribbon to celebrate the reopening of the labour and delivery unit at NGH. Dr. Szabo is joined by members of the labour and delivery unit team, midwives, and special guests, Brad, Abby, and Emma Adams.)

(Thursday, November 17, 2022) – The wait is finally over. On November 21, full labour and delivery services will return to Norfolk General Hospital (NGH), operating in a 24/7 model of care. In September of 2021, NGH temporarily transitioned obstetrical care to the Brant Community Health Care System (BCHS) due to staffing challenges.

“Access to safe, local obstetrical and newborn care is so important to the health of families and we are so excited to be able to offer that once again at Norfolk General,” said Dr. Jamie Szabo, Chief of Obstetrics. Thank you to all of the nurses, physicians, midwives, surgeons, and administration who believed in the importance of this department and worked tirelessly to get us to this point.”

The re-opening of our labour and delivery unit was made possible after several months of aggressive recruitment efforts held by our dedicated talent acquisition team. Staff, nurses, midwives and physicians also worked tirelessly behind the scenes to make the reopening of obstetrics a reality. The re-opening was also made possible through our strong partnerships, including St. Thomas Elgin General Hospital, which assisted in the training and education of our staff.

While recruitment efforts continue, NGH is pleased to announce that staffing levels are sufficient to fully reopen the labour and delivery program on November 21.

“We are thrilled that labour and delivery services are fully returning to Norfolk General Hospital on a permanent basis,” said Kim Mullins, Vice-President Clinical and Chief Nursing Executive. “The reopening is primarily a result of our dedicated teams at NGH, who persevered and never gave up to bring this much-anticipated service back to our community. I know the temporary reduction of services lasted longer than anyone wanted or expected, and I want to thank the community for their understanding and support during these times.” 

NGH will also welcome back a dedicated team of midwives to the hospital. Midwives of East Erie and Norfolk Roots have played a significant role at NGH and will continue to provide care to expectant mothers when labour and delivery service return.

NGH would like to acknowledge and thank the Brant Community Healthcare System (BCHS) for caring for mothers and babies during this time and for being such a valued system partner.

NGH would also like to thank our staff and physicians who put in a lot of hard work and effort to ensure the successful return of our labour and delivery program, despite the many challenges they have faced over the past two and a half years.

With the foundations that have been put into place, we are excited of the start of the program’s next chapter.

NGH would like to thank the community for its patience and understanding during this time.

The re-opening of the Labour and Delivery Unit has been dedicated to Registered Nurse (RN), Shannon Adams.

(Brad Adams, with his two daughters, Abby and Emma)

“Our teams at NGH cannot wait to welcome back families and provide them with exceptional care during a very important time in their lives,” said Robin Varnes, director of obstetrics. “We are also proud to dedicate this reopening to our friend Shannon Adams. She would have loved to be here for this reopening, and I am sure she is looking down on us today. Although Shannon is no longer here delivering babies, her spirit lives on, and her kindness and compassion will be a reflection of the care that we will provide our patients and their families every day.”

Shannon, an RN at Norfolk General Hospital for over 18-years, passed away after a long battle with cancer on January, 28, 2022.

Shannon was an incredible nurse. Her compassion and selfless dedication to helping others will leave a lasting impact on all the hearts of staff, physicians, and volunteers at NGH in the years to come.

For more information about Obstetrical care at NGH, please click here: