Hospital Securtity Protects Newborns From Kidnapping

By: Kristen Cosby
By: Kristen Cosby

February 7, 2006
Monday on News 12 we told you about an Amber Alert for a newborn baby in Macon. The 3-day-old baby boy was taken right out of his mom’s room. The newborn is safe with his mother now, but there are worries about nursery safety. News 12 is on your side with how local hospitals are making sure what happened in Macon doesn’t happen here.

They’re tiny babies, but big procedures go into keeping them safe and in the hospital. At Doctor’s Hospital it starts with the little one’s ankle.

Vera Lee’s baby girl is a day old and already she’s protecting her.

“The maternal instincts, when the baby cries it’s something you can’t describe. You would do anything for this child,” Lee said.

On the day of this little girl’s birth, a woman walked into a hospital room in Macon and walked out with a baby boy. At Doctor’s, there are procedures in place to prevent someone from kidnapping a baby. Every newborn wears a bracelet with an ID number on it. Mom and Dad get one too, and they have to be wearing it to get their baby from the nursery.

“Even if dad had been here three or four days and I know him, I’ve been in their room, even if I know him I can’t give him the baby if he doesn’t have that band on,” said Sally Wood, Breast Feeding Counselor.

Staffers also wear unique identification and parents are trained to only let people with specific ID’s touch their baby.

“It’s like a lion with her baby cub,” Lee said.

If a baby is taken, hospital employees are ready to act fast. About four times a year they practice a coke pink, that’s an alert for a stolen baby.

New moms can help keep their newborns safe by never leaving them alone in the hospital room, putting the baby in bed if mom naps, and knowing who is in the room.

“I’ve had moms be a little shy about asking me who I am. Don’t be shy, that’s your baby, you ask. You have a right to know who’s taking your baby and what they’re taking her for,” Wood said.

Coming in a few months to Doctor’s Hospital, an electronic device that goes on the baby’s ID band. If the baby leaves the wing, an alarm sounds and the elevators lock down.

The Macon hospital reported the baby did have on an electronic monitoring bracelet. It went off not once, but twice yesterday, when the baby left the maternity ward and when she left the hospital.

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