Few parents consider the possibility that their baby might be premature or need special medical care after birth. However, about one out of nine infants in the world are born pre-term (less than 37 weeks of pregnancy) and end up in the NICU. The great news is, if cared properly, 90% of these infants make it to their parents arms, fit and fine! Its great to be optimistic, however, while choosing the best possible hospital that will deliver your child, here are three questions you need to consider wrt their NICU unit:
* The number of NICU cases they handle every year: According to studies, you can expect better outcomes in NICUs that teat larger numbers of infants because they have the experience, equipment, research, and processes to assure the best care possible. Most hospitals are willing to provide you with these statistics.
* Are pediatric experts accessible in the NICU 24 hours daily? An NICU should have trained pediatric medical and surgical specialists in-house to respond immediately to your baby's needs.
* Does the hospital have a high-risk OB team? As parents you will be more confident in knowing that a team of neonatologists will work closely with your obstetricians in offering prenatal consultation prior to your delivery and attend all high-risk deliveries. Having knowledge of your delivery conditions and risks beforehand will make you more confident of handling your delivery.