Staff at Mary Lanning Memorial Hospital in Hastings say they were especially excited to welcome the first baby of 2012 because it's the first New Years baby born in their new unit.
Just hours after the new Family Care Center in MLMH opened in June, Registered Nurse Kay Bartley says they kicked things off with an emergency c-section.
"And it's been just an adrenaline rush ever since," said Bartley. "We've been really busy, we've enjoyed it, it's so awesome our patients love it."
Bartley says doctors and patients are enjoying private rooms and a new wireless labor monitoring system. The hospital also now has four neonatal intensive care rooms which have only been completely empty for six hours in the last six months.
"Where we came from before we had one big nursery, and so when that end got full you had to ship off, and here we're able to do it a little bit better," said Bartley. "It's more privacy for the parents, and it's been so much more comfortable for the long term babies that have been here."
Staff say they were even more excited on Sunday when the first New Years baby was born in the new unit.
Zephree Mullen says here baby girl wasn't due for another week, but she actually though Tomasa might be born in 2011.
"I didn't think she'd be the New Years baby," said Zephree. "I didn't think I'd make it that long, but I did. It's pretty exciting."
Mullen says Tomasa, named after her late father, will be joining a big sister and a big brother at home.
The hospital staff say they're hoping for even more healthy babies like Tomasa in 2012. They say over 700 babies were born at Mary Lanning last year, and over 75 were born in December 2011 alone.
And even though it can sometimes be a few weeks into the new year before a baby is born, all three of the tri-cities had New Years babies on New Years Day.