Our Lady of Victory Hospital Recognized as Safe Site to Leave Unwanted Newborns
Our Lady of Victory Hospital in Stanley is a recognized site for the safety of unwanted newborns. According to Cindy Eichman, president of OLVH, "We want to remind the community of our status as a safe place for newborns because we never know when a situation could occur that would put a young life at risk. We think it is important for the community to understand the state law that allows this practice."
The recognition is a result of Wisconsin's Safe Haven Law to prevent unwanted newborns from being abandoned. OLVH has posted signs on Emergency Room doors to signify it is a safe place for newborns. OLVH will also be running a regular notice in area papers to assure that this information is available on an ongoing basis.
OLVH Community Link Coordinator, Jill Pollert, says, "Being named a safe place for newborns is consistent with our mission, and we're glad to be a part of the program."
"We want to help a parent in a difficult situation make the safest choice," says Terry S. Walsh, executive director of Wisconsin Safe Place for Newborns. "These signs clearly direct a mother to a hospital where a dedicated employee will take the newborn, no questions asked. No prosecution. The beauty is the clarity and simplicity in an urgent situation."
Wisconsin's law says a parent can relinquish his or her unharmed newborn, up to three days old, with any hospital employee in the state. The law goes further by allowing on-duty police officers, firefighters or EMTs to accept a newborn. Hospitals, however, are ideally suited to receive and give immediate medical care to the newborn. The hand-to-hand exchange remains confidential.