Peninsula: Hospital may accept abandoned newborns

Teen-age mothers could abandon their new-born babies at Olympic Memorial Hospital in Port Angeles without fear of prosecution under a proposal being considered by medical center commissioners.

Nine hospitals between Puyallup and Everett already participate in the Safe Place program in which officials agree not to prosecute mothers leaving newborns at participating medical centers within 72 hours of giving birth.

The goal of the program is to prevent teen-age and other mothers from abandoning babies in unsafe locations.

A local Safe Place advocate has also suggested the program be implemented at Forks Community Hospital in Forks and Jefferson General Hospital in Port Townsend.

Retired nurse Connie Canfield of Sequim requested Olympic Memorial Hospital commissioners consider joining the Safe Place program during a meeting Monday.

“I think it’s needed here,” Canfield said. “There are new moms who aren’t getting the care they need. This is an alternative.”

The rest of this story appears in today’s Peninsula Daily News. Click on “Subscribe” to get the PDN delivered to your home or office.

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