Mercy Hospital Introduces New Neonatal Intensive Care Unit

Thursday, February 11th 2010, 3:03 pm
By: News 9

By Charles Bassett, NEWS 9

OKLAHOMA CITY -- Mercy Hospital has unveiled its newest addition; a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.

Heather Fuhr was born at Mercy Hospital 28 years ago. She was a premature baby so she spent time in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Over the years, Fuhr has kept in contact with the hospital staff and made sure to show up for reunions, but she wanted more.

"I had always heard my parents tell the stories about the wonderful care that I got when I was a preemie," Fuhr said.

Today, she is now a nurse in the Mercy Hospital's new Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Even more amazing, Nurse Michele McEver, who cared for Fuhr nearly three decades ago, is still on staff and is now Fuhr's coworker.

Both are pleased with the new unit. It has nearly double the capacity as the old unit and offers more amenities for families such as family rooms with showers and classes for parents who are about to take their newborns home.

"They can be involved in every single feeding and every single aspect of care for the baby," Fuhr said.

The new unit also offers private and semi-private rooms providing a more intimate setting for parents to bond with their newborns.

Mary Tomlinson is new mother at the unit caring for twins.

"This actually is much better, I think for them, to have it a little quieter," Tomlinson said.

New technology at the unit is helping to increase the chances of a baby's survival.

"We have more sophisticated ventilators where there is less lung trauma for the babies," said McEver, who is the Mercy Hospital NICU manager.

Mercy is holding a grand opening for the new NICU Thursday night.

Learn more about Mercy's Family BirthPlace.