Region We Serve
Regionalization is a process in which a state is divided into regions, and within each region, hospitals are stratified (and regulated) by level of care offered. Regionalization has gained momentum in New York State as well as the rest of the country. By identifying regions within the State, each region may direct its efforts to meet its own unique needs. At the same time, in an effort to avoid duplication of resources within each region, the concept of regional perinatal centers (RPC’s) has evolved to provide care for women with complicated, uncommon, or specific technical needs. Within each region, the NYSDOH has designated a specific institution as the RPC, mandated with overseeing the EBC/PDS and Regional Perinatal Forums, as well as an increasingly visible role in outreach and hospital quality assurance. The State formalized a redesignation process, through which each hospital in the region meets certain criteria toward a designation ranging from level 1 to level 4. Most simply, level 1 represents a typical hospital able to deliver minimally-complicated term mothers and infants. Level 2 hospitals have limited neonatal intensive care facilities, able to care for preterm infants as low as 30 weeks' gestation. Level 3 hospitals have extensive neonatal intensive care units as well as comprehensive perinatal, medical, and surgical services. Level 3 hospitals care for infants of all gestational ages, and with rare exceptions, all mothers. A level 4 institution has level 3 facilities and has received the designation of RPC, meaning that it has administrative and quality assurance responsibilities in addition to its clinical services. The regionalization and redesignation process is intended to better define levels of care at which each hospital should function, and to avoid expensive duplication of resources and subsequent dilution of care within each region.