Critically ill newborns reunite with doctors who saved their lives
2009-08-06 · By Editor
Approximately 100 former preemies and critically ill newborns were reunited this weekend with the doctors, nurses and hospital staff who helped care for them while patients at Miller Children’s Hospital Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). Patients in the NICU often weigh less than two pounds at birth and require immediate, intensivecare that can call for several months of inpatient stay.
The Saturday, Aug. 1 event, sponsored by Farmers Insurance, was a time for past patients and their families to celebrate another year of life and to give thanks to their NICU caretakers. Doctors, nurses and hospital staff were particularly excited to examine how much their tiny patients had grown and to reunite with parents and families.
With a carnival atmosphere, children of all ages played together and enjoyed games, arts and crafts, activities by Gymboree and MyGym, face painting by “Bubbles” the clown, and a visit from the Long Beach Fire Department. Opening remarks were made by Dr. Arthur Strauss, neonatologist with the NICU at Miller Children’s Hospital and Erica Quijada Barrera, March of Dimes. Patients and their families enjoyed a buffet-style lunch and a birthday cake to celebrate another successful year and spent time catching up with former NICU “roommates,” as many parents formed special bonds with while their children were being cared for.
Saturday’s event marked the third year that the March of Dimes has partnered with Miller Children’s Hospital for the NICU reunion, and nearly the 30th that Miller Children’s Hospital has held the event.
About March of Dimes: March of Dimes is the leading nonprofit organization for pregnancy and baby health. With chapters nationwide, the March of Dimes works to end prematurity—the leading cause of newborn death—and provides support to families of babies in the NICU. The March of Dimes NICU Family Support Program at Miller Children’s Hospital is the first and only program in California that offers support through NICU Family Support—a program designed to help families through the hospitalization of their newborn.