According to Harlan ARH officials, the "shut down" of the maternity ward is due to the fact that agency nurses replacing the picketing nurses will be going home for the Christmas holidays. However officials were not clear on how long the obstetrics floor will remain closed.
Aside from not being able to comment on the strike, officials said the plan at the moment was to have the floor reopened either after the agency nurses return from the holidays or upon the settlement of the strike itself with the picketing nurses returning to work.
ARH officials are urging expectant mothers to consult with their doctors concerning the birth of their babies if the due date is scheduled within the next few weeks.
Hospital officials also said there are surrounding hospitals which are capable of assisting with the delivery of the babies.