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PHOENIX -- In the same week that Banner Estrella Medical Center opened a new floor in their maternity ward, the hospital also welcomed a milestone in the number of births at the hospital.

A new postpartum ward opened at the hospital on Monday, then on Wednesday it welcomed newborn Emerson Jacobs, the 30,000th delivery at Banner Estrella.

Emerson Jacobs' parents, Amanda and Michael Jacobs, said their son was born a little early and it was a surprise that he turned out to be such a special number for the hospital.

"We actually thought that he was 29,999," she said. "Then the ladies came in and they let us know that we actually indeed were the 30,000th baby and so we were ecstatic."

The couple's doctor, Florian Walter, chief of staff and OB/GYN at Banner Estrella, has been at the hospital since it opened in 2005 and also delivered the Jacobs' first child. He said the hospital is on par for double the amount of birth that most hospitals have in the first 10 years.

"Most hospitals at about the 10-year mark are hoping to do about 15,000 deliveries," he said. "We're at 30,000 (and) part of that has to do with just the area where we are, young families that have moved into the west Valley and begin to grow their families."

The Jacobs' said they're glad to be going home and readjusting to their suddenly-grown family. Amanda said she's certain they'll be back, though.

"We plan on having a third baby. I know it's a little early to say that (because) I haven't even left the hospital," she said.

Mark Remillard,

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