Watson Coleman Asks State to Consider Needs of Trenton Women before Approving any Requests by Capital Health to Move Maternity Services Out of City

(TRENTON) – Assemblywoman Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-Mercer/Hunterdon) on Tuesday called on the New Jersey Department of Health to do everything in its power to ensure that Capital Health’s plan to shift its maternity services to its new Hopewell campus does not adversely affect the women of Trenton.

In doing so, Watson Coleman sent a letter to Health Department Commissioner Mary O’Dowd outlining her concerns over the plans that will effectively leave Trenton without any maternity beds or a neonatal intensive care unit.

“Transportation access to the Hopewell campus, as well as continued access to the services offered at the pediatric and obstetric clinic on Bellevue Avenue, are paramount concerns that must be addressed in order to ensure that Trenton women do not lose access to critical care. For many of the impoverished women in Trenton, accessing the neonatal intensive care unit in Hopewell is no easy feat and may, perhaps, prevent some women from receiving the critical care they need to ensure a healthy outcome for their infant,” Watson Coleman wrote in her letter.

The Health Department is the state entity charged with overseeing any Certificate of Need filed by a hospital in order to make operational changes such as this. Watson Coleman asked the department to examine the issues at hand carefully before making any decisions on Capital Health’s requests.

A full copy of the letter is attached.