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Mercy Children's Hospital

NICU Virtual Tour

  • The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at St. V’s Children’s Hospital provides specialized medical care for premature babies and sick newborns.
  • Our NICU has long held a Level III designation, the highest awarded by the Ohio Department of Health for the care of critically ill newborns.
  • In February 2006, we redesigned and expanded our NICU. This remarkable new unit combines state-of-the-art technology in a family-centered environment, enabling us to help our tiny patients to have a better chance of reaching their full developmental potential in the future.
  • In addition to holding a Level III designation, our expanded NICU is now the most advanced unit of its kind in our region.

A Calm Atmosphere

Given the life-saving medical care that takes place within its walls, you may not expect the quiet and calm you encounter when you walk through the NICU’s doors.
  • Because the slightest changes in their environment may be stressful for critically ill or at-risk newborns, we’ve used leading-edge technology to eliminate or lessen noise and light.
  • All ceilings and floors are constructed of sound-absorbing materials.
  • Decibel sensors in the ceilings alert staff when noise exceeds acceptable levels.
  • The lighting system features multiple light sources, all with dimmers.

While our goal in taking these measures is to avoid over-stimulating our tiny patients, we believe the NICU’s atmosphere, along with its family-friendly design, helps parents and siblings feel better, too.


Family-centered care

Our NICU was designed with the advise of parents and with families in mind.

  • Our innovative "pod" system groups a small number of beds together to provide families with ample room and greater privacy at each child's bedside. The newborns in each pod are cared for by a registered nurse who remains nearby - not at a nurses' station. And because we know how important it is for parents and their babies to get to know each other, we encourage parents to become involved in their babies' care. A new family lounge includes play space for patients' siblings, as well as a place for parents to share their experiences.
  • Private "pumping" rooms give breastfeeding mothers plenty of privacy and space.
  • We have three private rooms where parents can remain with their babies during procedures, if their condition requires isolation, or when circumstances warrant a private and intimate setting.
  • Our transition-to-home room lets parents gain confidence by working with their child's monitors and equipment before discharge from the hospital.
  • A Family Resource Center is located on the 6th floor. The Family Resource Center has information, resources, and computers to allow parents to access the internet for information and email.


State-Of-The-Art Medical Technology

Our NICU was designed to help our small patients thrive.

  • Sophisticated incubators, designed to reduce environmental stress on our tiny patients, are at the heart of St. V’s Children’s NICU.
  • All incubators and beds are “giraffe” models. Many of these have elevating hoods that provide instant and uncompromised access to perform a variety of procedures. This greatly reduces the need to remove babies from the protection and safety of their beds to receive medical care.
  • These incubators/beds also include built-in scales, radiant warming systems and an integrated X-ray component.
  • In addition, they pivot 360°, elevate to accommodate tall caregivers, and lower for the convenience of families seated at bedside.
  • Thanks to new “co-bedding” spaces, twins and triplets can stay in the same bed or in side-by-side units.
  • Our computerized Daily Baby Program records all details, doctors’ notes, treatment and instructions during a baby’s stay in NICU. Upon discharge, a printout is sent to the child's doctor.


Highly trained and Dedicated Medical Professionals

NICU is staffed 24/7/365 by dedicated professionals who are committed to the mission of Mercy and strive each day to provide excellent care.

  • More than 20 pediatric specialist and sub-specialist physicians are on the staff of St. V’s Children’s Hospital and practice in our NICU.
  • Our NICU is staffed exclusively by registered nurses with extensive training and experience in pediatric care.
  • Physicians are also supported in their work by Neonatal Nurse Practitioners, neonatal nutritionists and respiratory and physical therapists specially trained in pediatrics.
  • A Neonatal Nurse Practitioner is a registered nurse with a Master's degree or higher, and advanced training in the care of critically ill newborns. These advanced practice nurses are a vital part of the NICU care team.


Comprehensive Services to Ensure Continuity of Care

Because we’re a member of Mercy Health Partners, St. V’s Children’s can provide a seamless continuum of services to help families better handle the challenges presented by critically ill newborns.

  • Our maternal/fetal program offers state-of-the medical care for at-risk moms during pregnancy. As a result, we often identify a baby’s problems before birth.
  • Through Mercy’s Critical Care Transport, we can quickly arrange for critically ill and high-risk newborns to be transported to our NICU from other hospitals, accident scenes or their homes in a van staffed by a neonatologist and/or a Neonatal Nurse Practitioner, neonatal ICU nurse and a respiratory therapist, and equipped with a transport isolette and all the equipment essential to the care of fragile newborns.
  • St. V’s Children’s perinatal and pediatric palliative care program has a multidisciplinary team of professionals available to help parents through the process of having an ill child.
  • Our program helps parents – sometimes even before their baby is born – to understand their child’s condition and become familiar with the professionals, agencies and equipment it will take to care for their child now and in the future. In addition, we offer family support groups and pastoral care.
  • Neonatal follow-up clinic is a free service provided to all NICU "Graduates", or children who have been discharged from the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, to monitor for certain problems sometimes experienced by premature or sick newborns. This specialty clinic is staffed by a pediatrician with special developmental expertise, a registered nurse, a physical therapist, and a Registered Dietician. This clinic can help you find all the medical and community resources your child may need.
  • The Infant Monitor Program provides services for infants who may have trouble regulating their breathing or heart rate. We provide home cardio-respiratory monitoring, monitor teaching, infant CPR and obsructed airway teaching, and inpatient and outpatient multi-channel sleep pneumograms.

For additional Pediatric specialty services your child may need, please see Programs and Services.
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