Of all of life's future accomplishments awaiting little A'miyah Roslyn Fonder, she will always be able to point to her birthday on Tuesday, Jan. 8, and say that she was the first baby born in the completely remodeled New Family Center at Vista Medical Center East in Waukegan.
Born to Liliana Alers and Dylan Fonder of Beach Park at 1:44 p.m., A'miyah was the first of three babies born at Vista on Tuesday. All three were delivered by Martin Weiner, M.D., a longtime Vista OB/GYN. They were just the beginning as several more babies were delivered in the new unit on Wednesday, Jan. 9, with a number of expectant mothers due to become Vista maternity patients soon after.
The New Family Center is on the second floor at Vista East and was under construction for almost a year as the entire unit was completely redesigned and rebuilt. While most of the unit is now open, the final phase of the project will continue into the spring as a new waiting area, additional patient rooms and staff offices are completed.
"We're very excited to open our New Family Center and begin delivering babies in this beautiful, soothing environment for families," said Barbara Martin, Vista's president and chief executive officer. "This has been a long process but well worth the time and effort to make it happen. Our staff did a great job in facilitating the move so that there was no interruption in our service to patients."
The move began Tuesday morning after the last details were finalized and the new furniture and equipment were delivered. Nurses, patient care technicians, housekeeping staff, engineering, IT, security and other departments coordinated their activities to facilitate the transition in a matter of hours. Before all patients were moved into the new unit, all rooms needed to be fully prepped, phone and computer systems made operational, nurses' stations staffed and organized, all equipment checked and supplies put in place.
The New Family Center now includes nine labor and delivery rooms -- two of which are larger to handle multiple births; 10 mother/baby suites (with five more to open in the spring); three triage rooms; two operating rooms for Caesarean births; six-bed Level II neonatal intensive care unit and a four-bed newborn nursery.
All patient rooms are private with large bathrooms and walk-in showers, beautiful new furniture and flat screen televisions. Everything about the unit is completely state of the art, including 12 of the latest generation warmers for new babies that can help resuscitate them at bedside; cardiopulmonary heart monitors; and an obstetric unit documentation system that provides physicians and nurses with immediate access to all patient information.
"All of our patients really love the new, large rooms and are impressed with how nice it all is," said Maria BaMaung, RN, director of Vista's New Family Center. "They love the new beds, new cribs, new linens and everything about the unit. Of course, we know that patients can have their babies at any hospital where their doctors practice. When families see our New Family Center, I'm confident they'll choose to come to Vista."
The New Family Center offers free tours from 6-7 p.m. every Wednesday. To register or for further information call (847) 360-4333, ext. 5218.