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Olivia Perez is First Baby of 2018

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While residents of the Antelope Valley may’ve been up until the early morning hours celebrating the start of a new year, Antelope Valley Hospital (AVH) staff were tending to another exciting event: welcoming the area’s first baby of 2018. Born at 3:13 a.m. on January 1, Olivia Bella Perez weighed in at seven pounds and measured 19.75 inches. She is the first child of Daisy Zamora and Nathan Perez.

Thousands of babies are born annually at AVH, and the cycle begins anew each January with the celebration of the first birth of the year. Olivia was delivered by Melissa McCormack, M.D. "Everything happened so fast when I arrived at the hospital," said Zamora. "I wasn’t even able to get an epidural!"

As the community’s first baby of 2018, Olivia and her parents were given a large gift basket provided by the AVH Auxiliary that included a variety of baby items, such as an infant car seat, blankets, clothes, shoes, supplies, crib accessories and stuffed animals. Founded in 1957, the Auxiliary is a group of volunteers dedicated to raising funds through the hospital gift shops, thrift shop, bake sale and other seasonal sales events.

Tens of thousands of Antelope Valley residents have been brought into the world at AVH since its doors opened in 1955. In fact, more than 5,400 newborns were delivered at AVH’s Women and Infants Pavilion in the past year alone. Reflecting on adding Olivia to her family, Zamora said, "It feels great and exciting to be a new mom."

The Women and Infants Pavilion, AVH’s spacious maternity care facility, houses a complete array of obstetrical and newborn services. It features 39 private "Couplet Care" rooms that are furnished with special beds and bassinets so that mother and baby can stay in the same room until they go home. The facility is also home to a level 3b community NICU equipped with 20 private rooms to care for newborns with special needs as well as three technologically advanced surgery suites.

Three years ago AVH was designated a Baby-Friendly Birth Facility, which means that the hospital has met the gold standard in maternity care operations. AVH also has been acknowledged for its outstanding maternity services by receiving the Healthgrades® 5-Star Maternity Care Excellence Award. This award recognizes hospitals that provide consistent high-quality care for women and their babies during pregnancy, delivery and the first few days after delivery.

new parents holding newborn baby