NICU Nurses: Exceptional Care for Our Tiniest Patients

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No one wants their child to need the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU)  – but at St. Elizabeth Healthcare, your little one will be in kind, compassionate and capable hands.

The St. Elizabeth Level III NICU is located in the Family Birth Place on the St. Elizabeth Healthcare Edgewood campus. A Level III NICU can provide ventilation and other life-saving services to babies born at less than 32 weeks gestation.

At St. Elizabeth, our 30-bed NICU is staffed 24-hours a day, seven days a week with a team of specially-trained neonatology experts, including NICU-trained nurses, neonatologists, neonatal nurse practitioners, occupational therapists, respiratory therapists, dietitians, physical therapists, social workers, speech therapists, lactation consultants and pharmacists. Together, we are committed to providing a comprehensive, multidisciplinary care team to meet all of your child’s medical and emotional needs. 

What makes NICU nurses so unique?

NICU nurses are a large piece of each patient’s care. Our nurses help teach parents how to care for their little one by encouraging skin-to-skin kangaroo care to promote bonding, assisting with feedings and being available for questions or concerns at any time of day or night. 

“NICU nursing is specialized because it involves caring for some of the most medically fragile and complex patients,” says Julie Wolking, Nurse Manager at the St. Elizabeth Healthcare Level III NICU.

Taking Care of the Whole Family

In addition to caring for the littlest and most fragile patients, NICU nurses also care for the patient’s parents, siblings and loved ones.

“NICU nurses help parents through one of the most traumatic and vulnerable times of their lives,” says Julie. “They comfort, educate and provide hope to our NICU families.”

Families know they can count on our NICU nurses, no matter what challenges the patient faces. Our NICU patients include full-term infants with illnesses, neonates with cognitive disabilities and tiny premature infants born weeks or months before their due dates. Our NICU nursing staff can quickly adjust to any challenges to continue providing expert care in a safe, compassionate environment.

Setting Up for Future Success

Even when care is complete and families can leave the NICU, our nurses are committed to setting our tiniest patients up for success as they continue to grow and develop. They have helped create a special reading program to encourage parents to read to their little ones during their NICU stay.

Parents can select board books to read to their babies in the NICU. Once the baby is discharged, parents are welcome to take home a small collection of their baby’s favorite books to enjoy. Reading together helps to strengthen the bond between parents and their baby, as well as to promote development and literacy as the child grows. 

If you’d like to participate in the St. Elizabeth NICU book drive, board book donations will be collected in bins at the St. Elizabeth Healthcare Edgewood, Ft. Thomas, Grant and Florence Main Entrance information desks. The most requested board books include family favorites like Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, The Very Hungry Caterpillar, The Little Engine That Could and Good Night Moon. Board book donations should be brand-new.

If you are unable to drop off book donations but would still like to participate, donation checks can be sent to St. Elizabeth Foundation, 1 Medical Village Drive, Edgewood, KY 41017 with the “NICU Book/Reading Project” notated in the memo line.