News > St. Mary’s Healthcare Again Earns ‘Distinction’ for High-Quality Maternity Care

St. Mary’s Healthcare Again Earns ‘Distinction’ for High-Quality Maternity Care

AMSTERDAM, N.Y., Jan. 8, 2024—St. Mary’s Healthcare has once again been named a Blue Distinction Center for Maternity Care by Excellus BlueCross BlueShield as part of the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program.

The Distinction Center designation is awarded to organizations that demonstrate their commitment to best practices and rigorous national standards for high-quality, effective maternity care.


“Our Blue Distinction recognition gives families yet another reason to choose St. Mary’s to deliver their baby,” said Julia Shafer, director of women and family services. “This official, objective mark of quality confirms what so many in our community have learned firsthand—that St. Mary’s provides exceptional, patient-centered maternity care.

“For first-time parents or those who are new to St. Mary’s,” she added, “Blue Distinction also offers an additional level of assurance that mom and baby will be in great hands.”

In fact, the latest data shows that Blue Distinction maternity facilities perform better than non-Blue Distinction Centers on key measures of quality. On average, Blue Distinction Centers report 26% fewer episiotomies, 60% fewer elective deliveries and 17% fewer cesarean births—all of which point to healthier outcomes for patients.

“Congratulations to the team at St. Mary’s Healthcare on achieving this important quality recognition,” said Eve Van de Wal, Excellus BlueCross BlueShield Utica regional president. “The Blue Distinction designation is one more tool to help members make informed decisions about their healthcare.”