Newborn babies are frequently admitted to the neonatal intensive care unit of a hospital (NICU). Apollo Cradle hospitals serve the different levels of neonatal care. Childbirth is a delicate procedure for both mother and the baby because the latter undergoes numerous physical changes as they adjust to life outside the womb. Some babies find it difficult to adjust to the new surroundings. This is more likely if they are born prematurely i.e. before 37 weeks, have a low birth weight, or have a condition that necessitates immediate medical attention.
When newborn babies require specialised care after birth, they are frequently admitted to the neonatal intensive care unit of a hospital (NICU). As a result, learning everything there is to know about a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) can help parents prepare if and when their child is admitted in NICU. To begin with, let us discuss the different levels of Neonatal Care.
Levels of NICU
This is the basic level of neonatal care. This unit can perform neonatal resuscitation, treat newborn babies, stabilise and care for infants born between the 35th and 37th gestational week, and treat babies born with illnesses before the 35th gestational week.
This unit primarily provides assisted ventilation and continuous positive airway pressure. This level includes the ability to resuscitate and stabilise pre-term and ill infants before transferring them to a facility that provides newborn intensive care. This unit can care for infants born at more than 30 weeks’ gestation and weighing less than 1500 g.
The Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit cares for neonates weighing less than 1200 g or having a gestational maturity of less than 30 weeks. This unit has a variety of amenities, such as infusion pumps, oxygen masks, suction facilities, incubators, ventilators, TC monitors, vital stats monitors, and so on. The unit also has full-time nurse availability.
This is the highest level of neonatal care, with paediatric specialists as well as all of the expert care providers and specialised services of a Level III NICU. It also provides services such as extracorporeal membrane oxygenation and transportation from the hospital to the patient’s home. A level IV NICU is usually part of a larger hospital that specialises in surgical repair of serious congenital or acquired conditions.
Precautions That Need to Be Taken at the NICU
Visiting your baby
Parents can visit and spend time with their babies who are being cared for in the NICU. Other family members may be able to visit, but only during specific hours and in small groups. For that, it is always best to check with the hospital staff to see who will be able to see the baby.
Visitors in some units are required to wear hospital gowns. Gloves and a mask may also be required during visitation.
Before entering the NICU, all visitors must wash their hands. This is an important part of keeping the NICU as germ-free as possible for the babies.
Holding your baby
Depending on your baby’s health, you may be able to hold him or her even if he or she is on a ventilator or has an IV. If the doctors believe it is too much, you can still hold your baby’s hand, stroke his or her head, and talk and sing to him or her.
Babies in the NICU are fed on a set schedule. Your baby’s nurse will be able to tell you when it is time for him or her to eat and sleep.
Giving your baby enough rest
Make an effort to speak in a calm, soothing tone, keep the lights dim, and keep noise to a minimum. It is crucial for the baby to get enough sleep and rest in order to remain healthy.
It’s absolutely normal to be concerned about your baby while they’re in the neonatal care. Know that they’re in good hands and that the staff is doing everything they can to improve your child’s outlook. Don’t be afraid to express your concerns or ask questions about the procedures being performed. Also, if you are looking for a renowned neonatal care hospital around, look up for ‘baby hospital near me’, and you will find the best results.
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