NEW ORLEANS - As of 4:43 p.m. on Sunday, December 1, babies are truly back at Baptist! The Ochsner Baptist Women’s Pavilion welcomed its first baby late yesterday afternoon, just hours after the move from Jefferson Highway was completed.

Scott Stafford Crayne weighed seven pounds and five ounces and was 20.5 inches long. Parents Courtney and Randy Crayne were excited to learn their first child was the first baby born at the Women’s Pavilion, but said their “little guy was especially excited because now he has a claim to fame!”

To commemorate the first baby, Ochsner Baptist CEO Dawn Anuszkiewicz presented the Crayne family with a basket full of New Orleans gifts and gift certificates from local stores including donations from community partners Audubon Institute, Nola Baby & Family, Elmwood Fitness Center and Ochsner Baptist’s new baby store, O Baby!.

Sunday’s move of Women’s Services and NICU from the Jefferson Highway location to the new Women’s Pavilion at Ochsner Baptist hospital took approximately eight hours. Thirty-one NICU babies, eight women and three newborns were transferred to Ochsner Baptist during this timeframe. Acadian Ambulance used 12 ambulances to transport patients every ten minutes. More than 100 members of the Ochsner and Acadian Ambulance teams participated in the move.

“Move Day itself required more than a year of planning,” said Ava Jo Collins, Chief Operations Officer at Ochsner Baptist. “Because we were transporting our sickest infants as well as mothers who have just given birth, it was critical that we were prepared for every possible issue.”

In preparation for the final move, two “tabletop” drills and two “mock” moves were held in October and November. Dolls were used as NICU infants and newborns and off-duty nurses joined in as mothers to make the simulation as real as possible.

“Practice makes perfect,” said Lisa Pellerin, Assistant Vice President of Women’s Services and NICU at Ochsner Baptist. “It was important that all of the team members assisting with the patient moves had the opportunity to run through the plan in real time. We were on the lookout for any issues or red flags that needed to be addressed before the big day.”

“The move went off without a hitch and all patients are safe and sound in the new Women’s Pavilion,” said Anuszkiewicz. “I am extremely proud of the many members of the Ochsner team who have spent countless hours ensuring the success of this project.”

The Women’s Pavilion includes the women’s services departments previously located at Ochsner Medical Center on Jefferson Highway: OB/GYN clinics, Labor and Delivery, Maternal Fetal Medicine and Gynecologic Robotic Surgery as well as the Level III Regional Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Ochsner will continue to provide women’s services at its hospitals on the West Bank, the North Shore, and in Kenner, Raceland and Baton Rouge.

Additionally, the Women’s Pavilion features The Perkin Alternative Birthing Center, which will open in late December. The Alternative Birthing Center is the only hospital-based alternative birthing center in the region. A staff of Certified Nurse Midwives provides mothers with a natural, holistic birth experience in a homelike environment with comfortable beds and birthing tubs.“As the state’s largest nonprofit healthcare system, this move affords us the opportunity to serve more women and families across the Gulf South region. The capacity made available at the Jefferson Highway campus will allow us to serve a greater number of patients who have been referred based on critical needs,” said Warner Thomas, President and CEO of Ochsner Health System. “More specifically, this project represents a continued investment in the Greater New Orleans area as a healthcare destination for the region.”

Ochsner Baptist, located at 2700 Napoleon Avenue, has provided quality healthcare to generations of families, a tradition that dates back to 1926. Ochsner Baptist is staffed by more than 390 physicians and specialists – many practicing at Baptist for decades. Baptist has all-private inpatient rooms, 13 operating rooms, two cardiac catheterization labs, an on-site state-of-the-art imaging center and laser vision center and a 24-hour, full-service emergency department.

The Women’s Pavilion is located on the 4th, 5th and 6th floors of Ochsner Baptist at 2700 Napoleon Avenue. For more information, please visit or call 1-866-OCHSNER.


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