Due to a steady decline in recent years in the number of babies delivered at Saint Luke’s Cushing Hospital, the health care system has decided to cease delivery services.

The plan goes into effect Aug. 7.

“With this change, we will focus on the services our patients are most often seeking from Saint Luke’s Cushing here in Leavenworth,” according to an announcement posted by the hospital in an advertisement in last weekend’s Leavenworth Times. “At the same time, Saint Luke’s North on Barry Road (in Kansas City) will have the opportunity to serve families across an even greater geographical area. Moms-to-be can deliver in a spacious, up-to-date labor-and-delivery area with advanced medical technology and a highly trained staff – all in a facility recently voted ‘Best Place to Deliver a Baby’ by KC Parent Magazine.”

According to the notification, the change is part of Saint Luke’s Health Care System’s new regional approach and its newly established North Region.

Hospital officials said the decision to stop delivering babies in Leavenworth was made with much consideration.

The hospital is currently contacting each of its impacted patients directly to help coordinate their care.

“Saint Luke’s Cushing Hospital has proudly served Leavenworth and its surrounding communities for more than a century,” according to the advertisement.

The health care system announced that because health care changes at a rapid pace, and to continue providing the best care to the community, ending baby delivery services was needed to meet the evolving needs of the community.