Alberta’s jam-packed hospitals have prompted the cancellation of New Year’s baby celebrations.
A long-held tradition saw hospitals announce the first-born in the new year and proud parents often joined in the fun, showing off the newest members of their family to the public and the media.
The pandemic interrupted the practice in 2021 and 2022, when AHS said they hoped for its return in 2023.
However, that was not to be.
“Given the current capacity challenges at our health-care facilities brought on by a surge in respiratory illnesses, Alberta Health Services and Covenant Health will again not be identifying or announcing this year’s New Year’s babies,” says Alberta Health Services in a Thursday afternoon statement.
“While we understand that this is a traditional news event, it is simply not possible to invite media into our facilities at this time, or facilitate media interviews,” says AHS. “In addition, our labour and delivery teams are extremely busy and priority must be given to patient care.”
“We congratulate families on their new additions and welcome these brand-new Albertans to the world.”
AHS says it hopes to bring back the tradition in 2024.