Any unexpected situation brings with it a high level of stress and anxiety. We believe providing education to expecting mothers and their families helps alleviate some of that anxiety and fear, allowing you to collaborate with our staff to care for your baby. The following is a brief explanation of some of the terms your doctor or our staff talk about if your baby requires level II care. “What does that mean?”
Baby cannot produce enough body warmth and requires placement in a warmer.
- A warmer helps keep babies warm by staying at a certain temperature, or by adjusting to a baby’s temperature needs based upon a monitor reading. Warmers also protect babies against infection and help skin development in premature babies.
Baby is not strong enough to eat well and requires feeding through NG or OG tubes.
- NG (nasogastric) and OG (orogastric) tubes are made of thin, flexible material. An NG tube is inserted into a baby’s nose and is connected to the stomach via the esophagus. An OG tube is inserted into the mouth instead of the nose. These methods may be used to feed or administer medication to premature babies who often don’t have the strength or coordination needed to drink from a bottle.
Baby may have mild health issues related to prematurity, such as jaundice or apnea of prematurity.
- Jaundice is the yellowing of the skin and whites of eyes due to high levels of bilirubin in the blood. Bilirubin is produced by the normal breakdown of red blood cells. Normally, bilirubin passes through the liver and is excreted as bile through the intestines. Jaundice occurs when bilirubin builds up faster than a newborn’s liver can break it down and pass it from the body. While jaundice is considered harmless and usually goes away within two weeks following birth, more severe cases can be monitored and relieved within the level II special care nursery.
- Apnea of prematurity occurs when babies who are not carried fully to term cannot sustain breathing on their own continuously. Periods of bursts of breath may be followed by shortness of breath or shallow breathing and, in some cases, breathing may cease temporarily. Fairly common in preemies, the condition usually goes away as the baby continues to grow and develop.
A higher level of care … just in case
While most deliveries progress according to plan, it’s important to schedule your delivery at a hospital prepared for the unexpected. The only one of its kind in Yukon, the INTEGRIS Canadian Valley Women’s Center provides maternal-fetal services for expecting mothers as early as 32 weeks gestation.
Our special care nursery, also known as a level II special care nursery, is equipped with leading edge technology including monitors, warmers and respiratory equipment. The nursery offers an intimate environment where light, temperature and noise are controlled to help promote baby’s growth.
The level II special care nursery provides care for infants born after 32 weeks or weighing more than 1500 grams who have physiologic immaturity or who are moderately ill with problems expected to resolve rapidly and are not anticipated to need subspecialty services on an urgent basis. This may also include providing:
Fully Dedicated Staff Available Around the Clock
- care for infants convalescing after intensive care (need to feed, grow and maintain body temperature).
- assisted ventilation for less than 24 hours or respiratory assistance using continuous positive airway pressure.
- stabilization for infants born less than 32 weeks or weighing less than 1500 grams until transfer to a Level 3 NICU
Neonatologists who specialize in the care of sick and premature babies Our board certified team of attending physicians, called neonatologists, is responsible for the primary care of each baby who enters the special care nursery. Specializing in the care of sick and premature babies, these physicians are on call 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Our neonatologists and neonatal nurses have experience in treating babies whose birth weight is as low as three pounds, thus requiring the highest level of medical technology and nursing services available.
Critical Congenital Heart Defect Screening
INTEGRIS Canadian Valley’s experienced women’s center staff screens all newborns for critical congenital heart defects. Although most state screening panels do not include CCHD, we are committed to providing this simple, noninvasive screening. Newborn screening using pulse oximetry (checking for oxygen saturation in blood) can identify some infants with a CCHD before they show signs of the condition.