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News | May 2, 2022

NHB Labor and Delivery Unit to go on “Divert” Status

By Doug Stutz, Naval Hospital Bremerton/Navy Medicine Readiness and Training Command Bremerton Public Affairs

By NHB/NMRTC Bremerton Public Affairs Office – Naval Hospital Bremerton’s Northwest Beginnings Labor & Delivery unit will be in a “divert” status, April 29, 2022.
NHB is focused on quality and safety of care; in the setting of declining births in the area coupled with recent staffing losses, it makes it less possible to adequately staff the labor and delivery services with the required numbers and expertise.
An extensive analysis by Health Net Federal Services, Military Health System’s network provider for the Puget Sound area, and a site visit by NHB leadership to St. Michael Medical Center confirmed availability and capability of the civilian network to provide obstetrical care to NHB beneficiaries. St. Michael’s has 20 labor and delivery beds, and 15 post-partum beds.
NHB will continue to serve its patients by providing outpatient care for: obstetrics and gynecology, primary care, and multiple specialty clinics.  Further, current ancillary services and same-day surgery will continue.
NHB will continue to partner with its TRICARE network providers on the Kitsap Peninsula to support expectant mothers before and after delivery.  A formal follow-up review of the network capability will also be performed by Health Net in 4-6 months.
Smooth transition: NHB will communicate with each expectant mother during this period to update and inform them of the status, ensure access to ongoing care and delivery, access to medical records, and provide any informational support.  The goal is that patients will experience a seamless process throughout their pregnancy, delivery, and post-partum period.
While on divert, there will be no triage and admissions to labor and delivery. Laboring patients are advised to instead go the nearest hospital with a Labor and Delivery Unit, which is most likely St. Michael Medical Center, located at 1800 NW Myhre Road in Silverdale.
St. Michael has been apprised of the situation and are aware that some of NHB’s current OB patients may head there for evaluation and needed assistance in addressing delivery and patient triage needs.
Routine prenatal care at NHB will continue.  NHB’s OB/GYN clinic may be reached at 360-475- 4995/4209, during clinic hours, Monday through Thursday 8:00 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Friday, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
As always, NHB’s Urgent Care Clinic is open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., 7 days a week. For anyone with a medical emergency, especially any type of potential threat to life, limb, or eye-sight, please call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room.
Additionally, if medical advice is needed for a non-emergent issue, please contact the Nurse Advice Line for advice and referral to care. The Nurse Advice Line is available at no cost, provides information on self-care at home or advice on when to see a health care provider. Call the Nurse Advice Line toll-free number 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 1-800-TRICARE (1- 800-874-2273) and select option 1.
For those patients who end up needing to go to an outside hospital to deliver, please contact our Medical Records at 360-475-4449 to request any necessary documentation needed to ensure continuity of care while seen at the community hospital setting (after hours, please call 360-475- 4457).
Don't forget to keep your family's information up-to-date in DEERS.