St. Luke’s named to Best Maternity Care Hospitals list by Newsweek, Leapfrog

(l-r): Kim Pina, RN, Nurse Manager, and Deborah Toffey, RN, Executive Director of Women and Children’s Care

One of only 231 nationwide; of seven sites in Massachusetts, one of two south of Boston

Photo: (l-r): Kim Pina, RN, Nurse Manager, and Deborah Toffey, RN, Executive Director of Women and Children’s Care

St. Luke’s Hospital has been named to the Best Maternity Care Hospitals list for 2020, Southcoast Health announced this week.

The rankings were established by Newsweek, which partnered with The Leapfrog Group, a national nonprofit organization that reports on the safety and quality performance of U.S. health care facilities. Across the country, 231 organizations are included among the Best Maternity Care Hospitals, categorized by region – 15 were named in the Northeast, with seven in Massachusetts.

St. Luke’s is one of two hospitals located south of Boston earning a place on the list.

“The nurses, midwives, physicians, and all providers and staff at the St. Luke’s Women and Children’s Pavilion are among the most talented medical professionals I have ever worked with,” said Southcoast Health President and CEO Keith Hovan. “This national recognition from Leapfrog and Newsweek confirms what Southeastern Massachusetts parents are finding out with each experience: St. Luke’s is the region’s destination for starting and building a family.”

St. Luke’s performs more than 1,500 deliveries annually, and that number is expected to grow, officials said.

“The designation is important to St. Luke’s because it recognizes staff for providing the highest quality of care to our patients. It also validates our commitment to provide the families in our community with outstanding maternity care,” said Deborah Toffey, RN, Executive Director of Southcoast’s Women and Children’s Care. “For me, the designation means we’re succeeding in our efforts to meet evidence-based, nationally standardized measures of excellence in labor and delivery and newborn care – and we are advancing every day, with each patient we welcome.”

A panel of national experts advised The Leapfrog Group on standards for excellence in maternity care, including achieving lower rates of early elective delivery, NTSV C-section, and episiotomy, as well as compliance with process measures including newborn bilirubin screening prior to discharge and blood clot prevention techniques for mothers delivering via C-section.

“This honor is all about our dedication to mothers and newborns. The fact that our families can confidently stay in their own community to receive high-quality maternity care that meets and exceeds performance across the region is special,” said Kim Pina, RN, Nurse Manager of the St. Luke’s Family Centered Unit and Level II Nursery. “I’m proud of our unit receiving this designation because our team works hard every day to deliver outstanding care to every single patient, and they are being celebrated for all of their hard work.”

Southcoast Health is continuing to enhance coordinated inpatient services for the care of mothers, newborns and children at St. Luke’s, with labor room expansion and a Level II Nursery that is transitioning into a couplet model of care, allowing mothers and babies to stay together as they receive a range of services from Southcoast’s expert team of nurses and clinical staff, as well as Boston Children’s Hospital physicians.

“Once completed, we will be the first community hospital in Massachusetts to provide this state-of-the-art enhanced model of care,” Pina said.

The clinical setting builds upon the recent $14 million investment in the St. Luke’s Stoico/FIRSTFED Maternity Center.

The St. Luke’s Women and Children’s Pavilion is approved for VBAC (Vaginal Birth After Caesarian-section) procedures and hydrotherapy and recognized as a Blue Cross Blue Shield Center of Distinction and a Baby Friendly facility by Baby-Friendly USA.

For a recent patient story from the St. Luke’s Women’s and Children’s Pavilion, please visit

The full list of Best Maternity Care Hospitals will appear in the July 24 edition of Newsweek, available online and at newsstands nationwide. For more information, visit