Is the Birthing Unit (Obstetrics) closing at SMH?
No, the Birthing Unit (Obstetrics) at SMH is not closing. We have three obstetricians on staff and are actively recruiting for a fourth obstetrician (OB). There may be some gaps in scheduling as we work to fill our OB complement, but our nurses are here around the clock. We are making every effort possible to ensure that gaps in scheduling are minimized.

What if I am in labour and an OB is not available?
If you are in active labour and delivery is imminent or we are unable to transfer you safely to another facility, our OB nursing staff will partner with an Emergency Department physician or surgeon to ensure a safe delivery takes place. Any patient in need of emergency care presenting to the hospital will be cared for.

What if I require an assessment by an OB?
If you are in need of an assessment and an OB is not available, we will advise you to go to another facility. Once chosen, we will communicate with the hospital to ensure care can be accommodated and that the appropriate patient information/health records are available to them as needed.

When should I make contact with the Birthing Unit triage?
Please contact the Birthing Unit triage if: 

  • You believe that you’re in labour
  • You believe that your water has broken
  • You are having contractions prior to 36 weeks
  • You have any additional concerns

Does Stevenson provide epidurals?
Yes, epidurals are available 24/7 as an anesthetist is always on call. Other pain management options are available. Please discuss with your nurse or midwife.

When can I begin breastfeeding my baby?
Breastfeeding can begin soon after a baby is born, with the help of specific instructions from a nurse or midwife. If you are having any difficulties breastfeeding your baby, a nurse is also available to meet with any mother. Mothers who wish to use breast pumps are able to rent.

What should I bring with me?
Please pack lightly, as there is limited space for personal items.

  • Toothbrush and paste
  • Deoderant, comb, lip balm, personal care products
  • Heavy flow pads (pull up depends or nighttime pads)
  • Bathrobe
  • Nightgown or comfy clothes
  • Underwear
  • Slippers/sandals
  • Warm socks
  • Snacks/drinks for support person
  • Confortable pillow

For baby:

  • Diapers
  • Wipes (1 travel size package is not enough)
  • Vaseline
  • Sleepers (4)
  • Socks/mittens
  • Blanket
  • Car seat (Leave in car until discharge)
  • Hat
  • Bottles/formula (if planning on bottle feeding)

Is there a cafeteria?
Yes, however it is closed to patients and families at this time. 

Meals will be delivered to your room. There is a kitchen equipped with an ice machine, toaster, fridge, as well as coffee and tea for patients.

Support person is able to order meals from the hospital at a cost of $15/day for breakfast, lunch & dinner.

What happens if my baby needs to be transferred?
As a level 1 facility, our highly skilled team is competent in maternal and newborn care including the resuscitation and stabilization of newborns until transferred to a facility that provides intensive care.

When are visiting hours?
Visiting hours are now open to 24/hrs a day, seven days a week.

What type of room will I have?
There are four spacious birthing rooms. Patients who've had an uncomplicated vaginal birth are usually in the hospital for 24 hours while mothers who have been given caesarean sections are usually there from 24-48 hours. Depending on the complicatedness of the delivery, the new mother may be transferred.

How do I register my baby at Stevenson?
Stevenson provides new mothers with a package, including a booklet that provides them with more information about the hospital, birth registration and tax credit forms.

What is newborn hearing screening?
Every newborn in Ontario has their hearing screened in the community or at the hospital that they were born. The process is free of charge, simple, reliable and comfortable for your baby. The technology includes putting a small earphone in the baby's ear and measuring the ear's response. You might need to participate in follow up testing to confirm the results of your first test.

What is skin-to-skin care?
Skin-to-skin care, also called Kangaroo Care or Kangaroo Mother Care, is holding a baby bare chest to bare chest. This practice helps newborns adjust to being outside the womb. It is ideally done immediately after birth and as much as you can during the first few days of life. Skin-to-skin care can be done by both mother and father. It is especially useful for dad to hold his baby this way if mother is unavailable because of medical procedures.