Our intensive care nursery (ICN) currently has 50 bassinets, including intensive care and transitional care sections. A level III nursery (the highest care level), it is staffed by physicians, nurse practitioners and physician assistants from The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP); nurses and respiratory therapists who specialize in infant intensive care; and physical therapists, occupational therapists and speech/language/pathology therapists as needed.
Parents have additional space to be with their babies, including an overnight room to use if their child is critically ill or if they are preparing to take their baby home. Liberal visitation policies include 24-hour access for parents and visitation options for grandparents and others designated by the parents. Sibling visitation is available for any over the age of five (with immunization records) for much of the year. There may be times where visitation policies are restricted.
Infant Development Program
The infant development program teaches parents how to help their babies adapt to life outside the womb. While all new parents have this responsibility, the need is intensified with a premature or sick newborn. The premature infant thrives best with a staged program of sensory stimulation relating to vision, hearing, psychomotor development and feeding, including learning how to suck, swallow and breathe simultaneously.
Parents and baby continue to receive support from our team after leaving the ICN, including daily contact by telephone for as long as necessary. We are available to work with parents 24 hours a day.
Our outpatient service for babies who have been in the ICN provides specialized consultative care, including neurodevelopmental assessment and pulmonary function evaluation. Our team follows these babies with their pediatrician until they are free of medication, cardiac monitoring, or other special needs. We strive to identify neurologic or developmental problems at their onset, and intervene immediately before they can alter the child's development or self-perception.
Family Advisory Council
The Intensive Care Nursery Family Advisory Council (ICNFAC) was founded in 2013 to provide a formal communication vehicle for patients and families to take an active role in improving the patient experience at Pennsylvania Hospital.
The council focuses on discovering the most successful programs and practices for families and helps to replicate and share those best practices across the community. Our vision is to achieve a level of care where patient and family involvement is expected and welcomed by all. We promote families' access to information, support and educational resources, contribute to the education of the principals of patient and family centered care, assist in the planning and fundraising of projects for the ICN, and serve as a link between the community and the unit and improve family satisfaction.
Guided by the Pennsylvania Hospital Mission, the ICNFAC is dedicated to ensuring that our patients and families have a successful, compassionate, and supported healthcare experience by fostering relationships with the families in the ICN and caring for the babies.
For more information or to contact the ICN Family Advisory Council, please email ICNFamilyCouncil@uphs.upenn.edu.
Parent Education Classes
Complimentary classes are offered by Pennsylvania Hospital staff to the families of the patients in the ICN. Classes range from C.P.R., Infant Massage, Promoting Preemie Development, Breastfeeding and Baby Care Basics.
All classes are held in the Family Center. Class schedules and times are posted in the ICN.