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Rendering of expanded NICU room

Tiny patients, big needs

Rush Copley renovation to expand NICU care

We’re breaking ground to build a better future for patients and families in need of the services from Rush Copley’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU).

Expecting parents hope for a healthy baby and a perfect birth, but some babies require some extra care and that's why Rush Copley’s NICU is here. The hospital is building 13 private rooms and a bathroom with shower, to enable parents to stay with a fragile infant around-the-clock. The quiet environment afforded by a private room fosters improved brain growth and development in babies with extremely low birth weight.  Just as important, parents are better able to concentrate on what their doctors and nurses are telling them, and ask better questions without feeling self-conscious about being overheard.

Imagine the emotional roller-coaster these new parents must ride, waiting in limbo for their newborn to be declared out of danger and ready to embark on their new lives together. Chade Weatherspoon faced this unwelcome journey as her son Caleb, who was born at 29 weeks, underwent multiple procedures in Rush Copley’s NICU for two months following his birth. Today Caleb is healthy, happy and growing stronger at home with his family.

The NICU enhancements will help serve parents like Chade even better, truly making the NICU a home away from home for families to bond with their babies. Parents can be there when their baby gets a midnight bath or treatment, to help with feeding, or just lie and listen to the reassuring sound of breathing or the soft chirp of the heart rate monitor.

New Support Resources

We are preparing a variety of resources to support new parents as well. We are supplying a parent resource center with computers, reference books, and pamphlets. Parents can use the room to get some work done if they need to, read up on new medical treatments, or just relax and lower their stress level a notch or two. A palliative care room affords a space where families can gather in comfort and privacy around the tiny patients who are not expected to survive. Donations are also being used to build a family transportation fund, for help getting to and from the hospital and meals for those who need it.

If you would like to get involved in making a world of difference to new parents who are struggling to cope with the curve-ball that life has thrown them, please consider supporting Rush Copley’s NICU during this period of expansion. To designate your donation, write “NICU” on the memo line of your check or choose “Women’s Health Institute” in the drop-down menu of giving options when you donate online.