CHI Health St. Francis brings new staff to NICU unit

Published: Jan. 20, 2021 at 8:18 PM CST
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GRAND ISLAND, Neb. (KSNB) - CHI Health Saint Francis started to staff Neonatal Nurse Practitioners in their NICU unit the first of the year. This means they will be able to provide support for the families and nurses of premature babies.

“Our pre-term babies are still going to be here for a while, but our goal is to provide good quality care from start to finish so it does shorten their stay and they get to go home to their families,” NICU registered nurse Shawnee Wiliams told Local4 News.

For parents this means if they have a baby who needs that extra level of treatment, they can now get it in Grand Island just down the hall from where the delivery room is. Before babies could have had to be transferred to a whole different hospital.

“The goal is to be able to keep more patients here in Grand island in the NICU with the support of a Nurse Practitioner or a Neonatologist so families can be closer to home so we don’t need to transfer them to Omaha or Kearney or further away,” Neonatal Nurse Practitioner Erin Johnson said.

Having the new staff members on site is also beneficial to the nurses who work there as they can help them provide care and treat new families.

“It’s a huge weight off our shoulders too having them right there with us,” Williams said. “They attend deliveries with us so we have a physician right there at the time of delivery to follow the baby from start to finish. We are able to provide care to more critical babies and keep our babies here.”

Staff now has access to Neonatiologists through a new telehealth program to even better help provide care to their tiny patients.

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