Thursday, June 18, 2009
Medical Reports: Better for Babies
Having a baby can be nerve wracking and exciting at the same time, but if your baby needs special care in those first few weeks, nothing can be more frightening. Seven's Diana Diaz shows you a brand new facility in Broward built to be better for Babies.
WSVN -- New mom Marnie Lavalle is enjoying her baby girl Mia, but 14 weeks into her pregnancy, her doctor gave her some devastating news.
Marnie Lavalle: "She has a weakened abdominal wall, so her intestines were outside of her abdomen."
As soon as Mia was born, doctors took her straight into the operating room.
Marnie Lavalle: "They operated on her, they stuck all her intestines back in on the first surgery. We were really happy about that."
Marnie knew her daughter would need special care, and they are getting just that at the brand new Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Memorial Regional Hospital.
Dr. Lester McIntyre: "We have about 12,000 deliveries in the Memorial Healthcare System, and approximately, eight to 12 percent of babies end up in the NICU."
This isn't what you expect a NICU to look like. Instead of one big room with dozens of babies, each family gets their own private room.
Dr. Lester McIntyre: "What we're trying to do with the single rooms is mimic the in utero type of environment, the environment in the womb."
The floor, ceiling and walls are all built to absorb sound. There is diffused lighting so bright light doesn't reflect around the room and even the rocking chairs are designed not to jostle baby.
Marnie Lavalle: "It allows me to spend more time carrying her, which also helps her get better."
The 64-bed unit also comes equipped with a hi-tech monitoring system.
Dr. Lester McIntyre: "So these monitors all talk to a central monitoring station where we have the ability to individually monitor every room."
And every nurse is equipped with a portable phone that alerts them to an alarm going off in a specific room, so they can tend to any situation much faster when seconds count.
All of this was carefully considered when constructing the new NICU to back the team's philosophy that parents need to take a proactive approach in their baby's care.
Marnie Lavalle: "We were very positive, we stayed positive. Now she's our little happy Mia."
Diana Diaz: "Memorial's new NICU is a level three unit, which means the staff can care for babies born as early as 23 weeks."
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Memorial Healthcare System