The staff of Cox Branson’s Urgent Care can safely say their shift Saturday was unlike any other day in their medical careers.
A Cape Fair woman gave birth on the sidewalk outside the facility before a doctor could even make it outside to meet her.
Skarlette Ruiz was about an hour away from Cox Branson when she began to have contractions. When she realized they were getting significantly closer together, she called her father at his job to say it was time to head to the hospital.
They reached the entrance of the hospital, but that’s when Ruiz’s water broke and she fell to her hands and knees, afraid to move.
“My dad frantically yelled for the Urgent Care staff because I felt the baby coming,” Ruiz said. “I was so afraid to stand up. It just all happened so fast.”
Ruiz’s father ran to the hospital door and pounded on it to try and get the attention of staff. Dr. Heather Bridges was on duty in the Urgent Care when she heard the knocking and yelling.
“I heard a yell for help coming down the hall, so I ran out to the parking lot to find a woman delivering the baby on the sidewalk,” Bridges told the media. “When I got to her side, the grandfather had already caught the baby and was holding him.”
Bridges then obtained the necessary equipment to stabilize baby and mother, including clamping and cutting the cord.
“[The baby] had a strong cry, and I knew immediately when I heard that crying that everything was going to be okay,” Bridges says. “The mom was feeling hot and her hair was down. Our nurse Jennifer used her own ponytail holder to tie up the mother’s hair. EMTs and firefighters helped give her privacy and clean up the area, so it was just a great group effort. So proud of our team!”
Baby Paulo weighed in at 8 pounds, 1 ounce, and was 20 1/2 inches long.
“Everyone took amazing care of us even though our story was kind of crazy,” Ruiz says. “I’m so thankful for the staff and that Paulo is healthy due to the circumstances.”
Branson Urgent Care staff said they’ve experienced nothing like what happened Saturday.
“I’ve been a nurse for 30 years, and we’ve never had a sidewalk story,” Registered Nurse Joyce Abernathy said. ”This one has a happy ending and we’re so happy to be part of Paulo’s life. He’s just perfect.”