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New room for new lives: Sanford unveils new ‘C-Suite,’ a surgery room on the birthing floor

Travis Spier and Deb Grabow set up the simulation of a child delivery on Tuesday in Sanford Bemidji's new C-Suite facility. (Jordan Shearer | Bemidji Pioneer) 1 / 2
Travis Spier, director of simulation for Sanford Health, prepares a training mannequin on Tuesday for the demonstration of a child delivery at Sanford Bemidji's new C-Suite. (Jordan Shearer | Bemidji Pioneer) 2 / 2

BEMIDJI—The mannequin's baby was stuck—its shoulder jammed behind part of its synthetic mother's hip bones.

But, luckily, a surgeon and nurse were on hand to simulate an emergency cesarean section. Moments later, both were smiling and holding up the synthetic infant for hospital administrators and a Pioneer camera. The mannequins seemed unfazed.

That potentially life-saving operation was rehearsed in Sanford Bemidji's new "C-Suite," a surgery room intended for c-sections and, eventually, hysterectomies and more. It's on the hospital's third floor, near the birthing rooms, and staff said that will mean lower response times in an emergency because they can bring a patient down a hallway instead of down to the operating rooms on the first floor.

"It's so critical, when a baby's heart rate is dropping, to get them out as fast as we can," said Bethany Anderson, a registered nurse there. "That will make a huge difference."

A doctor on staff estimated that, theoretically, the time from the decision to operate to "baby out" would be 5-10 minutes with the new, logistically simpler room in place. It was 10-20 minutes beforehand.

Beyond that, Anderson said keeping those operations on the same floor means patients will have the same group of caregivers.

"So you don't have to switch care," she explained. "Everything is in the same people you've already established that relationship with."

There's a staff-only open house for the suite scheduled this Friday afternoon.

Joe Bowen

Joe Bowen covers education (mostly K-12) and American Indian affairs for the Bemidji Pioneer.

He's from Minneapolis, earned a degree from the College of St. Benedict - St. John's University in 2009, and worked at the Perham Focus near Detroit Lakes and Sun Newspapers in suburban Minneapolis before heading to the Pioneer.

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