When your infant needs advanced medical care, count on the experts at our Level IV neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at the Women's & Children's Hospital. Take advantage of the highest level of care available for newborns in South Texas, from a team of neonatal specialists using sophisticated technology.
Compassionate, Family-Centered Care
Rest assured, your baby will receive kind, attentive care at the NICU at the Women's & Children's Hospital. Our family-centered approach to care makes sure you are a decision-making partner in your infant’s care. You and your family will provide emotional, social and developmental support to your newborn while they heal.
24/7 NICU Access and Technology
Visit your baby anytime with 24/7 access to the NICU. You’ll be able to be at your baby’s bedside in the NICU while recovering from childbirth via Baby Chat. This technology allows you to see and hear your infant using a Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)-secured iPad.
When separation is unavoidable, you can see your infant from home or work via remote, secure cameras that we call University Angel Eyes.
A new tool for our tiniest patients
University Health Diagnostic Radiology recently purchased the new DRX-Revolution Nano Mobile X-ray unit by Carestream Health. This portable X-ray unit will be housed exclusively in the neonatal ICU, which allows us to offer shorter response times for diagnostic imaging. It also decreases the potential spread of infectious diseases into this unit.
Complete Neonatal Care and Services
If your infant is born with two or more complex medical conditions, depend on our NICU to provide high-quality medical and surgical care. Find a full range of care and treatment options for conditions such as:
- Brain injuries, such as hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE)
- Congenital anomalies
- Congenital syphilis
- Heart and neurological problems
- Hyperbilirubinemia (requiring exchange transfusion)
- Metabolic disorders and feeding difficulties
- Neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS)
- Respiratory distress syndrome
- Very low or low birth weight
Your baby’s care team may recommend:
- Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO)
- Laser eye surgery or eye injection treatments
- Liver or kidney transplant
- Nutrition and bone health treatments
- Tube feedings
- Pre- and post-operative surgery care
- Respiratory (breathing) support
- Whole-body cooling for HIE
Your Neonatal Team
Your baby is in the best possible hands with our multispecialty team. Your NICU care team may include:
- Specially trained neonatologists with advanced knowledge of treating premature and sick infants
- Nurse practitioners with specialized expertise in caring for newborns
- Dedicated NICU pharmacist with years of experience in neonatal care
- Registered nurses with advanced certifications in intensive care for infants
- Registered dietitians from our Neonatal Nutrition and Bone Institute
- Lactation consultants
- Pediatric subspecialists available as needed to treat your baby’s medical conditions
- Respiratory therapists available around the clock
- Dedicated clinical laboratory technicians to track changes in your baby’s health status at any hour of the day or night
- Developmental specialists to attend to your baby’s needs
- Child Life specialists, social workers, pastoral care counselors and other support staff
We make sure you also have onsite consultations and care, when needed, from pediatric medical and surgical specialists.
Transportation and Stabilization Team
Safe transport of your baby to and from the Women's & Children's Hospital and other regional facilities is available 24 hours a day. Each transport has a trained registered nurse and respiratory therapist and a doctor if medically necessary. Using special equipment for neonatal transport, the team can treat and stabilize your critically ill infant during a medical or surgical emergency.
Our neonatal transport team and NICU can deliver whole-body cooling for babies experiencing moderate to severe hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE), a condition that occurs when the brain doesn’t get enough oxygen. If left untreated, HIE can result in developmental problems or disability. Whole-body cooling, also called therapeutic hypothermia, helps treat this by temporarily lowering the baby’s body temperature.
Donor Milk Program
In partnership with Prolacta® Bioscience, the Women's & Children's Hospital provides nutritional care to NICU babies whose mothers cannot produce breast milk. The Donor Milk Program makes it possible for us to give newborns vital nutrients with 100% human milk products.
The NICU Goslings Program is an early literacy initiative offered to parents and caregivers when their babies are in the NICU. Our caring, experienced staff offers guidance to help your baby’s development and make your experience positive. Through this program, we’ll inspire confidence in your ability to recognize your baby’s signals and behavioral cues.
This innovative, research-based program features a number of learning experiences and resources including:
- Learning your baby’s evolving behavioral clues
- Establishing routines through interaction and repetition
- Books, songs, and other tools to encourage speech development
- Skilled, trained staff to guide you through your time in the NICU
NICU Graduate Clinic
Take advantage of ongoing care for your baby after leaving the NICU. The NICU Graduate Clinic offers two years of focused attention all in one place and will serve as your child’s primary pediatric medical home.
You’ll appreciate our PREMIEre program to check your child’s long-term health and development as they grow.