The Newborn's Version of Intensive Care - PIH Health

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Published on April 28, 2016

The Newborn’s Version of Intensive Care

NICU baby and doctor

NICU baby and doctorEvery expectant parent hopes that their baby is born healthy and strong. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case, especially when a baby is born premature. If a child is born too early or happens to be born with any serious health problems, they may require the services of a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU).

According to the California Children's Services (CCS) program, a Community Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) is a nursery within a hospital that has the capability of providing a full range of neonatal care services for severely ill newborns and infants.

At PIH Health Whittier Hospital, the NICU is equipped to handle a wide range of difficulties. Even newborn infants born at just 23 weeks or with an extremely low birth weight of 480g (about one pound) or who have severe or complex illnesses can be treated there successfully without necessity of a transfer to another facility.

“According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, we are a level IIIB NICU,” said Karen Profeta, the Administrative Director of Maternal Child Health Services at PIH Health Whittier Hospital. “That means we treat newborns who require intensive neonatology medical oversight with highly skilled nursing and respiratory care staff, advanced respiratory support and physiologic monitoring equipment, laboratory and imaging facilities, nutrition and pharmacy support.”

Obviously, no new parent wants to hear their newborn needs to go to the NICU, but it’s nice to know it’s available if needed. For more information about neonatal and obstetric services at PIH Health, please visit

The information in Healthy Living Online is for educational purposes only.  It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice.  The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation, or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan.

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