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Baby abandoned in parking lot of hospital

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CLINTON, Massachusetts (WCVB) — Clinton police are investigating after a baby was abandoned outside a hospital.

The newborn was left in the parking lot at UMass Memorial HealthAlliance-Clinton Hospital on Monday between 2 a.m. and 3 a.m.

The baby was found by hospital staff in a basket and swaddled in heavy blankets and is doing well.

UMass Memorial Health said the baby was evaluated and discharged to the care of the Department of Children and Families.

Police said the baby could have been legally left at the hospital under the state’s Safe Haven Act, but the person who left the baby did not make any notification to anyone at the hospital or leave the baby with an “appropriate person.”

“The Safe Haven Act allows a parent to legally surrender newborn infants safely to an appropriate person at a hospital but not, as in this case, unattended in a parking lot,” UMass Memorial Health said in a statement. “The key is that the parent has to give the child to a person who can ensure the child’s safety.”

The Safe Haven Act of Massachusetts, which was passed in 2004, allows a parent to legally surrender newborn infants 7 days old or younger at any hospital, police station or manned fire station without fear of facing criminal prosecution.

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