The Paradise Valley Hospital announced plans to begin the closure of its obstetrics, labor and delivery, and newborn nursing units due to a 10-year decline in birth rates.
“Our team has had the privilege of delivering tens of thousands of babies in National City, and the decision to close our obstetrics unit means we will redirect resources to where there is a greater community need,” said Neerav Jadeja, Chief Executive Officer of Paradise Valley Hospital. “The demand for perinatal care, labor and delivery and neonatal services at Paradise Valley is not what it once was, and this has forced us to focus on growing other essential services based on community need."
Paradise Valley Hospital said they've experienced a decline in birth rates over the last 10 years and is currently averaging less than two births per day in its 23-bed unit.
The hospital said in their release that according to the California Department of Public Health, birth rates at hospitals throughout San Diego County continue to decline, with 1,476 fewer births in 2019 than in 2018.
The closure process lasts 90 days and Paradise Valley will officially close the services on August 4.
The hospital said a transition plan is underway to ensure expectant mothers get connected to nearby hospitals. Three hospitals within a 10-mile radius that provide obstetrics, labor and delivery, and newborn services include Scripps Mercy Hospital Chula Vista, Scripps Mercy San Diego, and Sharp Chula Vista Medical Center.
Jadeja said they are making an effort to retain the staff who worked at the birthing center. The birthing center employed approximately 40 people. Those impacted will be provided opportunities for work in other departments of the hospital or other sister hospitals.