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Posted: January 29, 2014

Atlanta snowstorm may mean Halloween baby boom

Cox Media Group Web Staff


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If some recent severe weather events around the country are any indication, Atlanta-area hospital maternity wards may want to be sure they have some extra staff working close to Halloween.

For the lucky Atlantans who were able to actually make it home from Tuesday's snowstorm traffic jam, Wednesday may have been a day when they had some idle time on their hands.

Recent history shows that many Americans choose to spend their snow days snuggling with that special someone in their life. 

According to WebMD, the average length of a pregnancy in the U.S. is 39 weeks. That would mean that around October 29, Atlanta hospitals might expect to see a spike in the number of pregnant women ready to deliver.

Dr. Robert Graebe at the Monmouth Medical Center in Long Branch, N.J., was quoted by New York's Fox 5 News  as saying nine months after Hurricane Sandy, his neonatal unit saw a 30 percent jump in deliveries from the previous year.

>> Related story: Baby born on Atlanta interstate due to icy roadway

“It was a crazy time,” Dr. Steven Morgan, who practices obstetrics and gynecology at Jersey Shore University Medical Center in Neptune, N.J., told the New York Daily News. “A lot of people were home, a lot of people didn’t have TV, and obviously a lot of reproduction was happening.”

Heather Thompson, the executive director of nursing for women’s services at Mercy Hospital in St. Louis said that her hospital has also seen statistical spikes tied to weather or other events.

“We think back and reflect and sure enough there’s been either a snowstorm or some big event that folks celebrated,” she told CBS St. Louis after a snowstorm hammered the midwest in early January.

Thompson said the most recent example she saw was in the summer of 2012 — nine months after the St. Louis Cardinals won the 2011 World Series.

"One day we actually had a hundred babies admitted to the hospital,” she told CBS St. Louis. “We birthed about a hundred babies in a 2-3 day time period. And that’s a very high number.”

Washington Times provided material for this report


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