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Palomar Expands Neonatal Intensive Care Unit

Palomar Health has announced the opening of an expanded Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at its Escondido campus.

Steps away from the labor and delivery rooms, the brand-new Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, or NICU, serves an even greater need for neonatal intensive care patients. The facility opened to the public on Jan. 4 and can accommodate three times more patients, increasing from four to 12 beds.

This NICU is equipped with state-of-the-art technology, ensuring advanced intensive care 24 hours a day for the safety of every newborn. Palomar Health’s new NICU is staffed by a team of doctors, specialty-trained nurses, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, respiratory therapists, lactation consultants and other specialists, to guide parents through every step of their newborn’s journey. The new unit is also equipped with brand new ventilators, new incubators, new monitors and the latest technology to offer the best possible care for patients and serve all mothers and newborns throughout North County.

Since last year, Palomar Health’s world-class doctors have helped deliver 4,000 newborns, some of whom needed more intensive care. However, the newborns that needed more advanced, intensive neonatal care had to be relocated to other facilities due to the four cribs being at full capacity.

Diane Hansen
President and CEO
Palomar Health

The organization understands the importance of parents being close to their newborns in the first moments of their lives. Now with this expansion and a with a high demand for the neonatal intensive care unit throughout San Diego, Palomar Health Escondido will be able to serve an even greater number of families who need specialized care.

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“For us, this NICU expansion will not only relieve stress of our newborn parents, but also bring families closer together,” said Diane Hansen, President & CEO of Palomar Health. “Parents will be more comfortable and feel more like family, since both the newborn and the mother are taken care of in the same hospital. We’re looking forward to being able to expand our extraordinary care to so many more families throughout San Diego and beyond.”

Palomar Health Escondido and Poway Birth Centers earned a High Performing rating in Best Hospitals for Maternity. “High Performing” is the highest rating U.S. News awards for that type of care, which supports the organization’s mission to provide world-class care to each and every patient.

Palomar Health nurses and team members celebrate during the Dec. 20 ribbon cutting for the expanded Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Among those marking the occasion are Mel Russell, RN, MSN, Chief Nurse Executive; Amy Murray, RNC-Ob, C-EFM, MSN, Director, District Women’s Services; and Vaneese Cooke, RN, MSN, Nurse Manager, Birth Center and NICU. Natalie Piga, Systems Education Specialist, holds scissors. Photo courtesy of Palomar Health
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