Woman's Hospital opens big NICU expansion on Valentine's Day - WAFB 9 News Baton Rouge, Louisiana News, Weather, Sports

Woman's Hospital opens big NICU expansion on Valentine's Day

Source: Woman's Hospital Source: Woman's Hospital
Source: Woman's Hospital Source: Woman's Hospital
Source: Woman's Hospital Source: Woman's Hospital
"Whale pod" expansion at Woman's Hospital NICU (Source: Woman's Hospital) "Whale pod" expansion at Woman's Hospital NICU (Source: Woman's Hospital)
BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) -

Woman's Hospital is excited to announce the opening of its "whale pod" in the Newborn and Infant Intensive Care Unit (NICU).

Designed with an "under the sea" theme, the NICU is divided into pods to help parents navigate the large space easily. The new whale pod join the starfish, fish, turtle, seahorse, and dolphin pods.

Since construction began nearly five years ago, the NICU has experienced a significant increase in volume and duration of stay, causing some infants to have to be moved from single-family rooms to a group setting. Just in 2016, the NICU admitted 1,249 infants and transported another 90. In total, the infants spent more than 22,000 days in the NICU with an average stay of two weeks.

The $6.5 million expansion includes 11 new rooms, all of which are single-family rooms and designed to feel like the baby's nursery. This setting allows parents to stay overnight with their baby for the duration of their stay. The expansion also includes a versatile room with a sliding wall to transform the rooms for twins into a room for triplets.

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