What to expect when giving birth during a pandemic

Mother of triplets shares her hospital experience
Updated: Jul. 24, 2020 at 6:55 PM CDT
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LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - The classic guide, “What to expect when your expecting” could not have prepared Taylor Nelson for giving birth to triplets during a pandemic.

Giving birth during the pandemic can feel lonely, Nelson said. Only one person and a Doula is allowed in the delivery room.

“Usually it’s full of flowers, balloons and family members coming to visit and it just wasn’t like that.”

Everyone in the room has to wear a mask, even the woman in labor.

Nelson was fortunate and delivered before hospitals implemented that rule, but while her babies were in NICU, she had to wear a mask.

“The babies kind of look at you funny when you are wearing a mask because usually they are a bright color or have something on them,” Nelson said.

When Nelson was recovering in the hospital this time, she didn’t have the same family support or nurse support as she did with her first child. This rule is in place to limit contamination and prevent COVID-19 infection to the mother or baby.

“We didn’t really see many nurses. When we went down to the NICU, the hallways were completely bare. They would only come in when I needed medication,” Nelson said.

Dr. Edward Yoemans, chair of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, said recent studies do not indicate that pregnant women are at a high risk to catch the coronavirus, as long as they follow recommended guidelines.

Dr. Yoemans also said there has been no cases of covid-19 positive women transferring the infection to their baby in utero.

Only one local woman, who tested positive for COVID-19 has delivered a baby, according to Dr. Yoemans. She was placed in an airtight room during labor and then separated from her baby.

The CDC recommends separating a newborn baby from a mother who is infected by the coronavirus for at least two weeks or until she tests negative for the coronavirus twice .

“After it’s born, the mother could infect the baby, so they separate the baby for the baby’s protection,” Yoemans said.

Dr. Yoemans agrees that this is a difficult and a potentially traumatic request. He noted that no other international health organization has made this recommendation.

Fortunately, Nelson says her three new babies are growing and healthy. She is strong and positive, but admits that it’s tough not being able to show off her precious new babies.

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