A higher level of NICU care for your newborn

We hope for a healthy and easy delivery for every birth. That does not always happen. Sometimes health issues arise that can keep a newborn hospitalized longer than expected. For times like this Fountain Valley Regional Hospital and Medical Center has a state-of-the-art Level IIIB Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) where sick babies, especially those who are premature, receive specialized treatment.

Fountain Valley’s NICU can treat infections, birth defects, breathing difficulties, growth restriction and maternal health problems. A level IIIB NICU is a unit dedicated to caring for the smallest and sickest of newborns. Our level of NICU gives your baby access to a wider range of pediatric specialists, ventilation support systems, imaging capabilities and surgeries. Full-term babies can also be treated in the NICU for conditions such as anemia, jaundice, heart problems or breathing issues. Our NICU features 23 special care (Level IIIB) nursery beds that are certified by California Children’s Services.

High-risk Infant Follow-up Program

We also offer a High-risk Infant Follow-up Program designed to help children who required neonatal intensive care and may remain at risk for other problems in the future. Respiratory problems, cognitive delay, speech or hearing impairment, and orthopedic problems are some of these concerns. The Fountain Valley NICU program provides developmental assessment and follow-up for up to 3 years for infants who meet certain criteria upon discharge. Criteria may include premature birth, low birth weight, low Apgar Scores or birth trauma with developmental delays.

A team certified in caring for high-risk and premature infants addresses the medical, nutritional, neurological, developmental and social needs of our young patients. Clinic assessments are conducted at 4-6 months, 9-12 months and 18-36 months by a neonatal physician specialist, a developmental specialist and a neonatal nurse. Other ancillary service specialists such as a physical therapist, occupational therapist, social worker, or registered dietician may also be involved.

If the follow-up program is recommended for your child, your first appointment for the clinic will be made through the NICU prior to discharge. Your nurse will make sure you know how to access the clinic before you and your baby go home.

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Six Tips for Keeping Kids Healthy While You’re Sick

Sore throat, runny nose, coughing, sneezing, headache? All signs point to a cold. Adults have an average of two to three colds a year, while children can have them more often. Though symptoms may last for seven to 10 days, the biggest challenge is keeping the sick germs from invading the home, taking your kids down with it. Here are a few tips for preventing the spread of a cold to your kids—when you’re the sick one.

  1. Wash hands regularly. Wash your hands for 20 seconds with soap and water. Viruses that cause colds can live on your hands and will easily spread to anything you touch. Remember to also help your children do the same.
  2. Use hand sanitizer. Have an alcohol-based sanitizer on hand, and use it when soap and water are not readily available. It may be best to use after you’ve blown your nose, coughed in your hands or have touched your eyes, nose or mouth.
  3. Consider wearing a face mask. When feeding a baby or helping your little ones get dressed for the day, wearing a disposable face mask will not only help prevent the spread of germs, but will also remind you to keep your hands away from your nose and mouth.
  4. Disinfect surface areas. Clean doorknobs, countertops, handles and any other areas you touch regularly throughout the home. Also disinfect the toys and objects your children frequently touch.
  5. Get rest. There is no cure for the common cold, but getting plenty of rest and drinking lots of fluids will help you feel better. While over-the-counter medicines can provide temporary relief of symptoms, they will not cure your cold. Taking the time to care of yourself will help you and your family remain healthy.
  6. Avoid sneezing or coughing near your children. Keeping your distance from others is the best form of preventing the spread of a cold, but that’s easier said than done with your own family. If at all possible, try moving to a different area from your kids before sneezing or coughing.

While preventative measures are helpful, they may not keep your family from catching a cold. It’s always a good idea to focus on your own recovery, and talk to your doctor if your symptoms worsen.