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Media Contact: Lance Skelly 09 December 2004
  lance.skelly@emory.edu    
  (404) 686-8538 ((40) 4) -686-8538   Print  | Email ]
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Emory Crawford Long Hospital's Special Care Nurseries Nurture Preemies to Health
Alicia Lurry's pregnancy was virtually picture-perfect throughout the first two trimesters. She experienced very little, if any, morning sickness, she exercised regularly, drank plenty of water and milk, and ate healthy foods, like fruits and vegetables. Suddenly, during her 28th week, she noticed swelling in her hands and feet and her blood pressure began to rise.

Weeks later, her blood pressure had gone down, but an ultrasound showed the baby was not growing - she weighed less than three pounds. "We were told the baby was not getting enough blood flow through the umbilical cord and I was losing amniotic fluid. This was putting the baby at risk" Mrs. Lurry said.

Mrs. Lurry, an employee of Emory University, who was not due for another two months, was then given another shock. "The perinatologist told us that my labor would be induced and we'd have a baby within the next few days. I was so scared and stunned that I cried. I wasn't due until December."

Luckily for the Lurrys, they were planning on delivering at Emory Crawford Long Hospital, a hospital specializing in high-risk deliveries.

All babies born at Emory Crawford Long experience "family-centered care." This is especially important for babies who require intensive care services. Parents, like the Lurrys, are encouraged to spend time with their babies, talking to them, singing to them and feeding them. The neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), which was redesigned in 2002, allows families this opportunity, with increased privacy and more space.

The redesigned NICU rooms are considerably larger and house one ventilator bed and infant per room, providing more privacy for family visits. With the addition of the private rooms, the NICU almost tripled in size from 3,800 square feet to 10,800 square feet. Staff have room to conduct infant care while families enjoy visiting in roomy, quiet spaces of their own. In the old unit, which had no private rooms, parents were many times elbow-to-elbow with staff.

"As part of our belief in supportive care, we encourage families to be with their babies," says Ann Critz, MD, Associate Professor of Pediatrics, Emory University School of Medicine, Chief of Pediatrics and Medical Director of Nurseries, Emory Crawford Long Hospital. "The redesigned unit allows families this opportunity, and it allows our staff the opportunity to provide the same high-quality care we are known for, but in a vastly improved environment."

Alaina stayed in the special care nursery at Crawford Long for five weeks. "It was the longest five weeks of my life, says Mrs. Lurry.

In addition to treating the infants, the NICU staff work with new parents whose babies have different needs than most newborns.

"One of our main jobs is to help teach the parents of these tiny babies how to care for them," says Susan Horner-Montgomery, RN.

"The nurses were great. They understood the stresses associated with having a premature baby and the demands it places on parents. All were extremely patient and answered all of my questions, the number one being: when can we take her home. The neonatologists, Dr. Critz and Dr. Niki Kosmetatos, M.D. were absolutely wonderful as well. The entire medical staff made me feel as though I was strong enough and smart enough to take care of such a tiny baby. That made my experience at Crawford Long extremely supportive, nurturing and empowering."

The Lurrys brought Alaina home on Friday, Nov. 21, 2003. She weighed four pounds, one ounce.

Today, Alaina is a healthy, bright and curious 13 month old.

Media Contact: Lance Skelly 09 December 2004
  lskelly@emory.edu    
  (404) 686-8538   Print  | Email ]
Share:

del.icio.us

Emory Crawford Long Hospital's Special Care Nurseries Nurture Preemies to Health
Alicia Lurry's pregnancy was virtually picture-perfect throughout the first two trimesters. She experienced very little, if any, morning sickness, she exercised regularly, drank plenty of water and milk, and ate healthy foods, like fruits and vegetables. Suddenly, during her 28th week, she noticed swelling in her hands and feet and her blood pressure began to rise.

Weeks later, her blood pressure had gone down, but an ultrasound showed the baby was not growing - she weighed less than three pounds. "We were told the baby was not getting enough blood flow through the umbilical cord and I was losing amniotic fluid. This was putting the baby at risk" Mrs. Lurry said.

Mrs. Lurry, an employee of Emory University, who was not due for another two months, was then given another shock. "The perinatologist told us that my labor would be induced and we'd have a baby within the next few days. I was so scared and stunned that I cried. I wasn't due until December."

Luckily for the Lurrys, they were planning on delivering at Emory Crawford Long Hospital, a hospital specializing in high-risk deliveries.

All babies born at Emory Crawford Long experience "family-centered care." This is especially important for babies who require intensive care services. Parents, like the Lurrys, are encouraged to spend time with their babies, talking to them, singing to them and feeding them. The neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), which was redesigned in 2002, allows families this opportunity, with increased privacy and more space.

The redesigned NICU rooms are considerably larger and house one ventilator bed and infant per room, providing more privacy for family visits. With the addition of the private rooms, the NICU almost tripled in size from 3,800 square feet to 10,800 square feet. Staff have room to conduct infant care while families enjoy visiting in roomy, quiet spaces of their own. In the old unit, which had no private rooms, parents were many times elbow-to-elbow with staff.

"As part of our belief in supportive care, we encourage families to be with their babies," says Ann Critz, MD, Associate Professor of Pediatrics, Emory University School of Medicine, Chief of Pediatrics and Medical Director of Nurseries, Emory Crawford Long Hospital. "The redesigned unit allows families this opportunity, and it allows our staff the opportunity to provide the same high-quality care we are known for, but in a vastly improved environment."

Alaina stayed in the special care nursery at Crawford Long for five weeks. "It was the longest five weeks of my life, says Mrs. Lurry.

In addition to treating the infants, the NICU staff work with new parents whose babies have different needs than most newborns.

"One of our main jobs is to help teach the parents of these tiny babies how to care for them," says Susan Horner-Montgomery, RN.

"The nurses were great. They understood the stresses associated with having a premature baby and the demands it places on parents. All were extremely patient and answered all of my questions, the number one being: when can we take her home. The neonatologists, Dr. Critz and Dr. Niki Kosmetatos, M.D. were absolutely wonderful as well. The entire medical staff made me feel as though I was strong enough and smart enough to take care of such a tiny baby. That made my experience at Crawford Long extremely supportive, nurturing and empowering."

The Lurrys brought Alaina home on Friday, Nov. 21, 2003. She weighed four pounds, one ounce.

Today, Alaina is a healthy, bright and curious 13 month old.



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