The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Manchester Memorial Hospital is staffed with experienced neonatologists, physicians assistants, nurse practitioners and NICU nurses to give 24/7 coverage to support babies at the Family Birthing Center at Manchester Memorial Hospital. Supported by state of the art technology, they care for premature and sick infants and attend all high risk deliveries to ensure the highest quality care to those that may need additional support.
The NICU team understands the importance of the family bond, especially for newborns with healthcare challenges. Parents are encouraged to play an active role in their infants care and lactation consultants are available to assist with breastfeeding and pumping as needed. The NICU offers a unique blend of technology and compassion that encourages growth and healing for babies and their parents.
The team that make up the NICU are a diverse set of healthcare professionals with special training and skills.
Lactation Consultant: A healthcare worker who specializes in counseling nursing mothers on breast feeding.
Neonatal Nurse: A registered nurse who specializes in the care of premature and sick newborns.
Neonatal Nurse Practitioner: A nurse with advanced training, specializing in the care of premature and sick infants under the general supervision of the neonatologist.
Neonatologist: A physician who specializes in the care of premature and sick newborns.
Pediatrician: A physician who specializes in the care of infants, children, and adolescents.
Physical Therapist: A specialist in the developmental needs of NICU patients.
Physician's Assistant: A healthcare worker who specializes in the care of premature and sick infants under the general supervision of the neonatologist.
Respiratory Therapist: A specialist who assists in meeting the respiratory needs of NICU patients.
Social Worker: A specialist who helps families cope with having an infant in the NICU. The social worker will also assist families to make necessary lodging and transportation as well as assist with the needs after discharge.
The Unique Experience of the NICU
Having a baby in the NICU can be a frightening experience. Many parents can't eat or sleep, and have trouble understanding and remembering what they are told about their baby. It's important for them to visit their baby frequently and share their feelings with their partners, family, friends, the NICU physicians and physician assistants, nurse practitioners, nurses, and social worker. These individuals will help cope with the situation.
The NICU environment can be overwhelming when first taking in the unit and its significant array of specialized equipment and alarms. These are normal and expected feelings. Regular visits create a sense of familiarity that will dispel this reaction.