Maybe it’s the water. Or maybe it’s just springtime.
Whatever the case, there’s a baby boom going on at Aurora Medical Center, and it’s not just with OB-GYN patients.
In the surgical services department, no less than 12 of the nursing staff are expecting babies sometime in the not-so-distant future.
While expectant mothers are not uncommon in a hospital setting, having this many pregnant staffers from the same department is unusual, said Jess Herr, manager of surgical services.
“They usually come in threes,” said Herr, who has been with the hospital for the past 12 years, 10 of which have been in a leadership role.
“Three is what we usually expect, but this year, it’s been like, ‘Now who else?’” Herr said.
The moms-to-be range in age from 21 to 41 and have worked at Aurora for as little as three weeks and as long as eight years.
For some, this is their first child, for others a second or third.
Some of the moms will be delivering at Aurora, others closer to their homes.
Deb Dosemagen, 30, a registered nurse with surgical services and pre-admission testing, due on May 10, plans to deliver at her home.
Catching up with the very busy nurses wasn’t easy. On Wednesday, the News met with seven of women at the hospital, 10400 75th St.
Administrators provided photos of two more of the nurses, but for three, photos were unavailable by press time.
For these working moms-to-be, the water cooler talk is about food cravings and how to get a baby to “flip” (the phase of pregnancy during which the fetus positions itself head down in preparation for birth).
In a corridor outside of the Same Day Surgery area, they shared some of their pregnancy highlights.
Jessica Terry, 33, a registered nurse who is due May 15, revealed her craving for Rice Krispie treats.
“I’ve got five in my locker right now,” she said.
“There was a week when I wanted banana shakes, but it was only for one week,” said Becky Meyer, 32, who is due May 24.
“For me it was green olives,” said Dosemagen.
“When we get together we talk about how we’re doing our squats (pre-natal exercises) or yoga,” Meyer said. “Our conversations are like, ‘Hey this is happening now,’” and “Is this normal?’”
Being within three weeks of her due date, Terry said, “Everything after next week is fair game — let’s do this thing!”
“I think they all planned this to get the summer off,” joked Herr.
Despite the extra requests for maternity leave, Herr said her department will be well staffed in coming months.
“We will get creative with staffing from within by training others to step up,” she said.