FORT COLLINS, Colo. — Preemie power will reign this weekend as the staff at Poudre Valley Hospital reunites with children who began their lives as premature or critically ill infants in the hospital’s high-level neonatal intensive care unit.
The hospital’s annual Preemie Reunion from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday features a superheroes theme. Children can have their faces painted; get their photos taken; play games; explore an ambulance and eat a healthy lunch. The event will take place at PVH on the east side of the building and in the PVH’s café courtyard on the hospital’s lower level.
“Our physicians and nurses look forward to seeing the children and their families each year,” said Barb Peters, neonatal intensive care unit nurse manager. “The children grow and change so much. It’s really rewarding to see a child born weighing only a pound grow into a toddler that is running, playing and smiling.”
Former neonatal intensive care unit families can RSVP for the event at uchealth.org/PVH-preemie-reunion. For more information, call 970.495.8293.
The staff on the neonatal intensive care unit routinely cares for newborns as young as 28 weeks gestation rather than having them transported to Denver hospitals that offer the same specialized critical care. The PVH Level III unit has cared for approximately 4,300 infants since receiving the high-level designation in 2006.
Earlier this year, PVH opened a new, expanded neonatal intensive care unit, making the home-away-from-home a more comfortable, private and nurturing environment for new life and new parents. The unit is more than double the size of the old unit. It is fully equipped with the latest technology and capabilities, such as high-frequency ventilation, nitric oxide and hypothermia therapy. It provides families with a private lounge and showers, and each room has a convertible sofa so parents can stay overnight.
PVH is the only hospital between Denver and Billings, Mont., that offers Level III care. The designation is one of the highest that can be achieved. Medical Center of the Rockies in Loveland has a Level II nursery or Special Care Unit that routinely cares for babies born as early as 34 weeks gestation.
The neonatologist physicians and neonatal nurse practitioners who work in PVH’s neonatal intensive care unit are part of the team that provides services to two Denver hospitals—Children’s Hospital and University of Colorado Hospital—that are nationally recognized for the treatment of infants. Other PVH staff members who provide Level III care—nurses, respiratory therapists, occupational therapists and physical therapists—are extensively trained in neonate critical care.
UCHealth is a Front Range health system that delivers the highest quality patient care with the highest quality patient experience. UCHealth combines Memorial Hospital, Poudre Valley Hospital, Medical Center of the Rockies, Colorado Health Medical Group and University of Colorado Hospital into an organization dedicated to health and providing unmatched patient care in the Rocky Mountain West. Separately, these institutions can continue providing superior care to patients and service to the communities they serve. Together, they push the boundaries of medicine, attracting more research funding, hosting more clinical trials and improving health through innovation.