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PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Women & Infants Hospital broke ground Wednesday on a $33 million upgrade that’s on the way.

The Brown University Labor and Delivery Center will be a three-story addition to the main hospital with 20 delivery rooms. The new rooms will be nearly twice the size of the hospital’s current birthing spaces, officials said, and each one will have a large window to let in natural light.

“We are, in essence, creating a foundation for the next generation of our community,” Women & Infants President and COO Shannon Sullivan said. “Our new center will ensure the highest quality for every member of the community who comes to us.”

Sullivan said they wanted more modern rooms since about 80% of babies in Rhode Island are born at Women & Infants.

The new center will make for easier access to emergency equipment in case of complications, according to Sullivan. She also said it will allow for the creation of “birth teams” and give nursing students more hands-on experience.

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Dr. Michael Wagner, president and CEO of Care New England, noted that many of the trained nurses at the hospital already come from Brown University.

“It’ll be a place of new beginnings, a place of joy and celebration,” Wagner added.

The project is set to cost $33 million in total, with $5 million going toward a research center within the facility. Hospital officials said they’ve raised $11 million so far, and they hope to get the remaining $22 million through additional fundraising efforts.

The project is expected to be completed by the end of 2024.

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