When a baby is born prematurely or is critically ill after birth they may require specialized care from a hospital that provides a high level of neonatal intensive care.
Hospitals within the HCA Midwest Health can provide this high level care to newborns. HCA Midwest Health also provides dedicated neonatal transportation services via ambulance for infants to be transferred to a hospital that provides these specialized services.
The Midwest Neonatal Transport Team is a highly skilled group of medical professionals with expertise in the care of critically ill newborns and specific training in neonatal transport. The team transports newborns under the direction of board certified neonatologists. These physicians are experienced pediatricians with advanced training in the care of critically ill babies.
What to Expect During Transport?
For the transport, your baby will be placed in an isolette designed to support these tiny patients. An isolette provides a warm, quiet environment and allows for monitoring the baby’s heart and lungs during the ambulance ride to the next facility.
What Happens at the New Location?
When your baby arrives at the new location they will be taken to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) where they will be placed in an isolette or crib to provide a warm and quiet environment. They will be placed on a monitor that will help the medical team observe their heart rate, respirations, and oxygen level. They will be assessed by their nurse as well as a neonatal nurse practitioner and the receiving physician.
Tests or labs will be performed, if necessary. There will be a nurse caring for your baby 24 hours a day. You may visit your baby when you are able. The HCA Midwest hospitals are open to parents 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
What Can You Do to Help?
We know this can be a frightening time for parents. If you have questions at any time or want to call to check on your baby you are always encouraged to do so. Your nurse will keep you informed of your baby’s care and will let you know when you are able to hold your baby. Family involvement is an important part of the healing process for your baby and you.
What Else Should You Know?
Infants may also be transferred from one hospital to another when they are at a stage of recovery that requires less specialized care. At these times transferring the baby to a location that allows them to be closer to home is most beneficial. This gives the family the opportunity for closer bonding and helps reduce stress as their baby prepares for their arrival home.