Palms West Hospital welcomed the first baby of 2021 on the afternoon of Friday, Jan. 1. Elias Valdez was born at 4:05 p.m. to Evelyn Ortiz. He weighed 7 pounds, 14 ounces.
“I found out that I was pregnant, right as the pandemic was unfolding,” Ortiz said. “It was pretty scary at the beginning, but I took a lot of precaution to make sure that I was protecting myself. Our entire family was being very careful around me. Although I was nervous, things went a lot better than expected, and I felt pretty safe at Palms West Hospital.”
Ortiz said she was impressed by the birthing center staff and for a smooth birthing experience. Although she has two other children and considers herself a veteran, the nursing staff made her feel as if this was her first, explaining things and providing tips to make her feel at ease. “My nurse was super helpful and comforting throughout the entire labor,” Ortiz said. “She was kind, patient and checked on me continually.”