Madisonville, KY (Dec. 15, 2022) — Baptist Health Deaconess Madisonville has announced that its Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) received Level III approval from the state this week.
A Level III NICU is capable of caring for very small or very sick newborn babies. Level III facilities have a wide variety of specialized staff on site, including neonatologists, neonatal nurse practitioners, neonatal nurses, respiratory therapists, physical, speech and occupational therapists, social services and pastoral care, all who specialize in high-risk neonatal care.
"These are typically newborn babies that may need assistance with breathing or lung-development, aren't able to maintain the correct body temperature by themselves or don't eat well just yet," said Dr. Alex Soriano, neonatologist at Baptist Health Deaconess Madisonville. "Not all of these are pre-term babies, which is a common misperception."
The hospital had to obtain a certificate of need from the state of Kentucky as part of the approval process. They have converted three of their existing Level II beds to Level III beds with this approval.
Baptist Health Deaconess Madisonville Mother Baby Unit Nursing Director Lydia Long says the unit is designed to help babies that need extra help and equipment. "From the design of a quiet atmosphere to accommodations for parents to stay with their children, to having all the services in place, we have the capability and technology to care for these high-risk infants right here in our community," says Long.
"This is very important for many of our families that can't travel long distances each day to see and bond with their new baby," added Long. "You can see these parents relax a bit knowing they are in the same facility or community as their precious newborn."
Baptist Health Deaconess Madisonville offers a wide-range of services to aid expecting mothers, from prenatal care and classes, OB/GYN services at delivery and beyond, and pediatric care for babies upon arrival. If you are interested in learning more, visit BaptistHealthDeaconess.com.