Catholic Health making COVID-19 testing available to all moms before delivery


BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB)–During a virtual press conference Tuesday, OB/GYN specialists from Catholic Health sent the message that hospitals are still the safest place to have babies to pregnant women throughout Western New York.

The health system tells us they are instituting universal COVID-19 testing for all women before delivery.

Catholic Health officials say they will test expectant moms with scheduled inductions and C-sections three days before their planned delivery.

Women who come to the hospital in labor for an unscheduled delivery will receive a rapid COVID test at the time of admission.

“In most cases, we can have the test back in about an hour to provide expectant families with greater peace of mind,” added Dr. Cassagnol, who is a trained OB/GYN physician in addition to his administrative role at Catholic Health. “If a mom tests positive, we have special protocols in place to protect the entire family, while enabling her to provide all the care her baby needs, including breastfeeding.”

Catholic Health says in recent weeks its seen an alarming trend of women in active labor waiting too long to go to the hospital or try to deliver at home and then go to the hospital.

“Women do not need to change their birth plans because of Coronavirus,” says Anthony Pivarunas, Chair of OB/GYN Services for Catholic Health. “More importantly, they should not wait to get to the hospital when active labor begins. Being able to monitor mother and baby enables us to provide the safest birth possible.”

Troy Licastro is a digital content producer who has been part of the News 4 team since 2018. See more of his work here.

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