photo of Birthing Room

There are 13 new private rooms which allow delivering mothers to remain in the same room for labor, delivery, recovery and post partum, rather than being moved from room to room. The Center offers on-call massage and custom coffee service and deluxe terry cloth robes and slippers for the mothers to take home.

Each room is fully equipped so that needed equipment is unobtrusively built into the cupboards and cabinets to create a less hospital-like experience. The new rooms are designed to be more inviting and accommodating for spouses and families, and include a hideaway bed for fathers and a bathroom with a private shower for each room, as opposed to two showers which were shared by everyone in the old facility. The nurses also benefit from having staff space to shower and refresh, which also benefits the mothers.


The Women’s Center staff proudly displayed the capabilities of the new Facility. The new operating room has state of the art beds, for the comfort and care of the mother. The operating room is dedicated to performing Caesarian Sections and will no longer share the space with other surgical needs, as was the case in the former operating room. This will allow more flexibility to include the presence of family members during the operation.


The nurses at the Center have received special training in the stabilization of babies of difficult births, so that they can be transported, if necessary, to larger facilities, like UCSF via helicopter or by ground.


The Center has an advanced infant patient simulator for team training for anything from routine care, to critical emergencies.  The baby, breathes and simulates many of the life functions of a real baby. Training on the simulator gives staff practice in responding to real life situations in a non-life threatening situation.


Denay Gutierrez and David Dominguez were touring the facility with particular interest since Denay’s delivery date is November 13, and she is hoping to be able to deliver their baby in one of the new rooms. Dominguez noted that a friend had just had a baby in the old facility, he said this new center was luxurious. He said he was excited about the bed for the fathers. Gutierrez said that she liked it because it felt much more like home. The expectant mother said that the old facility seemed like everything was cluttered and cramped. Denay has lived in Hollister all her life and didn’t expect to see something like this here. She had heard about it last year, but she “didn’t expect it to be this pretty!” The expectant father said, “It was worth the wait!”


Frankie Gallagher, Director of Marketing and Public Relations noted that the new center is triple the size of the current facility at 14,000sq feet. Gallagher said that Center is due to be reviewed by the state on October 22 and will be ready to open and begin serving the community immediately upon receiving accreditation.


Gallagher reported that the building was built with funds from Measure L, a bond measure in 2005 which raised $32 million and that the funds were used to build; the Women’s Center, the Emergency Room, the Support Center and for technological upgrades in the Hospital, as well as the CT scanner in the Emergency Room. The Auxiliary raised over $300,000 for the Digital Mammography Unit for the Women’s Center and the Foundation raised over $500,000 to equip and furnish the Women’s Center. The Center has new beds, monitoring systems, cabinetry. She noted that on the second floor of the Center is the Women’s Diagnostic Imaging Services which is scheduled to open in the Spring. Among the Services to be provided are Mammography, Bone Densitometry, Echocardiography,  3D and 4D Ultrasound, Breast Ultrasound, Stereotactic Breast Biopsies.


Gallagher said that there are typically 4-500 births a year in Hollister and that many mothers have previously chosen to go out of town to deliver their babies due to the age of the facilities at the hospital. She says that now Hollister can offer facilities that rival any other hospital in the area, like Community Hospital of the Monterey Peninsula, or Good Samaritan in San Jose. The OB staff has recently, in 2012 and 2013, was recognized with the “Quest for Zero” Award for Excellence in OB Safety Standards.


San Benito County families now can look to Hazel Hawkins Hospital to provide the latest technological advances in delivery care.