Staff from Westmead and Blacktown hospitals’ hard-working neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) and special care nursery were recognised for their efforts in caring for our littlest patients during Thank U NICU Day (November 14).
Miracle babies (and their parents!) visited the wards to celebrate the staff who cared for them in their early days when they were born prematurely and needed extra care.
Both hospitals celebrated with cake and afternoon tea.
Miracle Babies volunteer Caroline Davies visits the Blacktown unit fortnightly, providing support to parents with newborns in the unit.
“As someone who has been through the premature baby experience, I feel it is important that new parents have someone to lean on, ask questions and share stories to alleviate the fear and anxiety,” she said.
“My daughter Amy was born at 32 weeks in 2011 and spent two weeks at Westmead NICU before being transferred back to Blacktown Hospital’s special care nursery so I know what they are going through.”
Miracle Babies also provides journal packs, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day gifts for parents and Christmas presents for newborns.
Nursing unit manager Terry Freeman said: “the valuable support provided by Miracle Babies is exceptional for all our parents who are going through a life-changing journey with their premature newborn.”
Miracle Babies Foundation founder Melinda Cruz said Thank U NICU Day was a wonderful celebration for miracle families.
“Having a baby born too early or critically ill is devastating and the medical team care for our babies and parents in this time of need,” she said.
“Thank U NICU Day is a great way to say thank you to all the staff and acknowledge their efforts.”
November is NICU Awareness Month and an opportunity for communities to learn more about these specialised medical units and how to support families through this traumatic time and the transition to home.
Families and the community are invited to stay connected and celebrate the day through dedications and messages on social media via the Miracle Babies Foundation Facebook page or at www.miraclebabies.org,au