• Montreal's Jewish General Hospital is currently not permitting any partners to accompany pregnant women into its maternity ward as a health measure to help flatten the curve of COVID-19 in Quebec.
  • A petition addressed to Premier François Legault and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has begun in hopes of reversing this decision.
  • Read more about this situation below.

During these unprecedented times, many changes have had to be made to normal routines. This includes various policy changes in hospitals. On this note, Montreal's Jewish General Hospital is no longer permitting partners or doulas to go into its maternity ward. For the entire duration that the COVID-19 pandemic lasts, pregnant women and health professionals will be the only ones permitted in this hospital's maternity ward.

The official quote on the Jewish General Hospital's website reads "for important safety concerns, the partner or a designated person is not permitted at the time of delivery and for the post-partum period."

"The partner or a designated person will be allowed to accompany the pregnant women to the triage area, and then will be asked to leave the hospital."

In response to this decision, a petition addressed to François Legault and Justin Trudeau was created by "Montreal Mom" on Change.org.

The petition begins by stating that "whether this is their first, second or multiple child, being pregnant during the COVID-19 pandemic has caused many of us a great deal of stress as there is so much uncertainty."

Currently, there are over 75,000 online signatures on this petition. The next goal stated is to get 150,000 signatures.

The author of the petition goes on to say that "understandably, this is a novel virus and a lot is unknown; however, with all the precautions being taken to flatten the curve, having a support person during such crucial times such as birth as well as death (palliative care) is essential to the mental health of those patients."

During the Government of Quebec's daily press conference about the coronavirus situation in the province on April 4, the Minister of Health, Danielle McCann, spoke about this topic.

"Unfortunately, some conjoint... partner of a woman who was about to give birth was infected with COVID-19, had symptoms. And that's really, really something that should not happen in a hospital, anywhere," said McCann when asked about Jewish General's decision during the press conference.

"That person could have infected other people."

Many soon-to-be-mothers have taken to social media to express their concerns, including Montreal influencer Alex Centomo.

Centomo has been very vocal to her close to one million followers about her stress as a first-time mom — the same type of stress which is referenced to in the description of the petition.

Quebec's Minister of Health reminds us that "this is very important to protect our health workers and to protect the population. So this has to be completely, completely followed."

This is a situation that our province has never dealt with before, and health officials are doing everything in their power to keep people safe and help stop the spread of COVID-19 in the province.

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