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Lacombe doctor delivers baby in parking lot

Mother and baby are doing fine after ordeal

By Emily Jaycox

For the Lacombe Express

Labour can be unpredictable and come on fast, as one woman found out last week.

Alberta Health Services (AHS) has confirmed that a woman gave birth to a baby in a vehicle in the parking lot of the Lacombe Hospital and Care Centre on Tuesday evening, March 26.

“The rate at which labour can progress varies between individuals,” said Melissa Ballantyne, senior communications advisor for AHS central zone in an email April 1. “Occasionally, delivery begins while en route to the hospital.”

Dr. Matthew Unger, who had been working in the hospital’s ER, was called out to assist with the delivery. Blackfalds resident Dwane Wieve was in the Lacombe hospital’s ER when Dr. Unger was called out “on an emergency.”

According to Wieve, Dr. Unger left at about 8:30 p.m. and returned at around 9:30 p.m., stating he’d just delivered a baby.

“AHS is grateful for the quick actions of Dr. Unger,” said Ballantyne. “Mom and baby are stable and doing well.”

Dr. Unger has been practicing in Lacombe for 10 years and told AHS a parking lot is the strangest place he’s ever delivered a baby during his career.

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