Sometimes, a baby may need some extra help in making the transition to the world. For those babies who need these more critical care services, we have our Neonatal
Intensive Care Unit - also called the NICU and pronounced “Nick-You.” Riverside's NICU is the only Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit on
the Peninsula (American Academy of Pediatrics definitions of NICU levels here). It is an
extraordinary place where neonatologists, advanced practice providers, nurses, respiratory
therapists, and other specialists work closely with families to help
these special babies get off to a great start. Except under rare circumstances, this level of care means that your baby can stay on the Peninsula and near to you at home.
The NICU brings together advanced technology and highly-skilled and experienced health care providers to provide intensive care for even the tiniest patients. We care for premature and extremely premature babies who may need months of care, as well as newborns who just need a couple of days of extra attention.
A baby may need this extra help because of prematurity, low birth weight, infections, breathing difficulties, heart problems, or a particularly difficult delivery. Developmental care is our focus. We provide this for your infant by mimicking an in-utero environment, so they can put all their energy towards growing stronger.
Our 21 bed, Level III NICU provides these high-level services:
- Care for babies 23 weeks of gestation forward
- Advanced respiratory care (including nitric oxide, high-frequency ventilation, CPAP, mechanical ventilation)
- Total body cooling
- NAS (Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome)
- Ophthalmology care
- Lactation consultants
The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit is located on the south wing of the second floor near the Woman & Infant Unit and Labor & Delivery. From the main lobby at Riverside Regional Medical Center, you will take the elevator to the second floor. You will need to enter through the security doors to Labor & Delivery and follow the signs to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.
Parents can visit their newborns in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit 24 hours a day, with the exception of shift change times (6:30 - 8 a.m., 6:30 - 8 p.m.), which allows the nurses to carefully communicate the care needs of each infant. We ask that only two visitors be at the bedside at one time. Siblings of the infant may visit in the NICU with a parent. One visitor may accompany the mother or the other individual wearing the second matching band. Our Family Waiting Room located in the main hallway is available for your use. Parents may also call (757) 594-3451 anytime to check on baby.
Through a secure online portal, parents, family and friends can view their infant in real-time, 24/7 through a NICVIEW camera at 10 individual NICU beds. These cameras help you to continue developing that bond with your preemie or hospitalized infant when you can’t be in the NICU.
Viewing of the baby’s intimate environment is protected by encrypted transmissions accessible to specified users using passwords issued by our NICU. You would sign up for this service in the NICU to be given your baby's live streaming logon. There are no recordings made, and no images are stored.
Neonatologists are pediatricians who have completed additional training in the care of newborns and premature infants. Our neonatologists and their team of neonatal specialists provide state-of-the-art care for our neonates through our partner, Pediatrix Medical Group.