28 March 2019 | Babies that “graduated” from Adventist Health Lodi Memorial’s neonatal intensive care unit did so in full regalia – complete with caps and gowns – on Wednesday, March 27. Their parents walked them through the Lodi, California-based hospital’s cafeteria in recognition of their successful treatment at the unit.
The ceremony came as a celebration of a recently-certified higher level of care offered by Lodi’s NICU.
Maternal Child Department Director Valeria Stump said that it had been “a longtime dream of ours to have a level II NICU so that we could keep moms and babies together in our community.”
Prior to December 2018, Lodi had been forced to transfer to other hospitals babies born before 38 weeks who required an IV, antibiotics or had blood sugar challenges. This would often result in babies’ being admitted further away from their family’s residence.
“We would have been so far away from him and that, as parents, that’s really hard,” said mother Hieu Singh in an interview with FOX40 as she reflected on what her NICU options would have been without the Lodi upgrade.
The hospital’s NICU staff have all undergone specialized NICU training at the University of California, Davis.
Adventist Health is a faith-based, nonprofit network of hospitals, clinics, home care agencies, hospice agencies and joint-venture retirement centers in both rural and urban communities, serving more than 80 communities across the western United States and Hawaii. The healthcare system is affiliated with the Adventist Church.