Families are not important things; they are everything.
That’s why the third floor of the new Trinity Hospital will be devoted solely to Women and Children’s services. It is where patients and visitors will find departments dedicated to the earliest beginnings of healthy family dynamics: The Family Birth Center, which includes Labor & Delivery and Postpartum units; the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) and Pediatrics.
Family Birth Center Nurse Manager of the Family Birth Center, Danya Brown, acknowledges that more, and larger rooms will be welcome, but the biggest change for her staff and patients will be that the two operating rooms are located on the same floor allowing C-Section deliveries and mom/baby recovery to occur in one place.
“Currently after a C-section, the baby and support person go to the postpartum unit, and mom goes to our post anesthesia care unit (PACU), which are in different locations,” Brown said. “In our new space, surgery and recovery are all within the Family Birth Center so mom and baby can stay together, which contributes to healthy mom-baby bonding.”
Hospital rooms are laid out in a horseshoe, with two nurses’ stations located on each end. There will be 12 labor rooms, doubling current availability, with two additional rooms designated for triage, where staff can monitor labor symptoms and care for any urgent pregnancy concerns. Additionally, the Labor & Delivery Unit has dedicated space for three antepartum rooms should a soon-to-be mom require specialized in-hospital care prior to being ready to deliver.
After delivery, the Postpartum unit provides respite for moms in one of 16 available private rooms with private baths. “We average 125 deliveries every month, so the new space will be put to good use,” Brown says.
Trinity’s NICU is located next to the Family Birth Center and is designed to support the family while providing care for the infant’s physical and developmental needs. The new layout enables families to be continuously involved and supported as an essential partner in their baby’s care.
There are 11 single rooms, plus three rooms assigned for twins, one room for triplets, and a room specifically designed for families to prepare for the transition home. Each room contains dedicated neonatal care equipment, and a space for families to relax, rest and bond with their baby. A family lounge also is available with a kitchenette and seating areas, if families wish to step away from their baby’s bedside.
Pregnancies of multiples carry an increased risk of delivering prematurely and it is not uncommon to be admitted to the NICU. “Historically, we did have two sets of triplets and three sets of twins in the hospital at the same time. It was a little crazy – all were premature and required a lot of care. It was a ‘holy cow’ kind of moment,” said Nicole Kummer, nurse manager of NICU and Pediatrics.
In addition to the extra room and workspace, Kummer is most excited about the safety and uniformity new equipment will provide the NICU. Due in part through funding from the Trinity Health Foundation, Kummer added six Giraffe Omnibeds that provide a controlled environment of light, sound, temperature and humidity for its occupants. “In the NICU, the tiniest babies are kept safe by decreasing stress and stimulation, which significantly impacts their overall health,” she said.
The NICU will have two new nurses’ stations with central monitoring, so the care team can monitor every baby. To aid in providing safe infant feedings, there is a dedicated milk prep room and two additional Lactation Rooms. The NICU has additional conveniences available such as procedure, supply and equipment storage rooms, a staff conference room and break room. However, convenience is not the primary driver of what the third floor will offer: there will be space, privacy and standardized efficiencies – all of which lead to more comfort and better patient care.
The Pediatrics department will have 10 private rooms with a child-friendly design. Children and their families will have access to a large play therapy room, which Kummer says “is a crucial part of health and wellness for kids.” The unit will also have a large visitor lounge as well as all the amenities to provide safe, high quality patient care.
“For many families, their stay in Women’s and Children’s Services is their first experience with hospitalization and may often be their ‘first impression’ of Trinity Health. The Family Birth Center at the new hospital campus will offer families the optimum environment for care and bonding as a family throughout their stay, as they excitedly welcome another member into their family,” said Director of Women’s and Children’s Services, Kathy L. Schaefer.
According to Schaefer, the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit will offer infants needing intensive care a quiet, healing environment that also gives their families the privacy and attention needed. The Pediatric Unit will comfortably afford parents the ability to stay with their child during hospitalization in a child-focused environment.
“Women’s and Children’s Services care team members deliver family-centered care and will continue this important tradition at the new campus in spaces that optimally accommodate the families we serve,” she added.