By Team

FORT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – Holy Cross Health in Fort Lauderdale will permanently close its maternity unit in March.

The announcement comes a week after the hospital announced that it was temporarily closing its maternity ward due to COVID-19 related staffing shortages.

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The maternity unit will close on March 14th in support of the hospital’s “re-imagined vision for Women’s Health at Holy Cross.” The hospital said the closure is not COVID-related.

“Over the last several years, Holy Cross Health has witnessed birth rates decline, congruent with national trends, as a result of shifting demographics in our surrounding communities and patients selecting other hospitals for obstetric services in our primary and secondary service areas,” according to the statement.

Other services for women will not be affected.

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“Holy Cross Health will continue to provide gynecologic services and comprehensive Women’s Health services through our Dorothy Mangurian Comprehensive Women’s Center and Holy Cross Medical Group physician practices,” according to the hospital statement.

Holy Cross said their doctors will continue to treat patients in their offices and have the opportunity to oversee their deliveries at other hospitals.

“We are working with our physicians to secure credentials at local hospitals, enabling them to see their patients’ deliveries to term,” according to the statement.

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The hospital is also reaching out to other hospitals to find positions for any maternity staff they are not able to retain. Team