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Brooks-TLC confirms challenges with obstetrics unit

Brooks-TLC Hospital System this afternoon confirmed what was first reported by the OBSERVER and The Post-Journal: it is facing tremendous challenges with its obstetrics unit at this time.

In a news release issued Thursday afternoon, the health-care institution said 92% of its staff is vaccinated following Monday’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate deadline. Additionally, the hospital is reaching out for assistance when it comes to its maternity department.

“Our pre-existing staffing concerns in support services and OB, as well as a national nursing shortage, are further compounded by the vaccine mandate,” said Mary LaRowe, president and chief executive officer at Brooks-TLC. “We have been able to offset immediate capacity restraints affecting each department to keep support services open. However, our OB department is significantly strained by a combination of staffing challenges along with the mandate. Contingency planning for OB services is ongoing and in collaboration with our partners in Buffalo, particularly Oishei Children’s and with our local obstetrics and gynecological service providers.”

Hospital officials said the state Department of Health is aware of the situation and is gathering support to help Brooks-TLC during this demanding time. The Health Department and all other health-care organizations are closely monitoring a court decision regarding religious exemptions and how that may impact staffing in the near future.

Brooks-TLC remains committed to providing quality and compassionate healthcare in the communities it serves.

The John R. Oishei Children’s Hospital of Buffalo is the regional center for comprehensive and state-of-the-art pediatric trauma, surgical and medical care, including neonatal, perinatal and obstetrical services. Oishei Children’s specializes in making childbirth a special experience for all women. Its caring team of healthcare providers combines a state-of-the-art facility with family-centered care.

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