Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU)
OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital provides expert care for babies born 32 weeks or later that need a little extra help getting started. Our level II Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Hillsboro Medical Center offers:
- Attentive care around the clock, with a nurse for every two or three patients.
- A private, individual room for you and your baby.
- A nurturing, family-centered environment that involves you in your baby’s care.
- Access to OHSU’s world-class specialists in neonatal care.
- Care closer to home, family and your support network.
Why do babies come to the NICU?
If your newborn needs care after birth, you’re not alone. About 10% of newborns require this advanced level of treatment. The most common reasons they come to our Level II NICU are:
- Premature birth: Infants who are born early (typically 32 weeks or later) with non-serious health issues.
- Mildly to Moderately ill: Newborn babies who have health issues including jaundice, minor breathing problems and feeding challenges.
- Smaller babies: Specialized support for smaller babies including twins and triplets.
Our doctors, nurses and specialists monitor your baby around the clock and provide immediate care. The NICU can treat up to eight babies at a time.
- Our NICU hospitalists specialize in caring for premature babies.
- Our nurses are certified in neonatal resuscitation and trained in neonatal intensive care.
- Our team has access to specialists from OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital.
- A team station that monitors your child 24/7.
We want you to be involved in every aspect of your baby’s care. We encourage you to take part in the daily visits with doctors and nurses to help plan your baby’s treatment. There’s always someone available to answer your questions.
Your baby’s care area
Your baby’s room: Your baby will be in a private room with a special bed designed to support newborns through the phases of their development.
Equipment: Our NICU is equipped with anything your baby may need, including incubators or phototherapy lights.
Furniture: You’ll have a reclining chair that lets you have skin-to-skin contact with your baby (called kangaroo care). It’s also good for breastfeeding.
Family space: In your baby’s room, there is a comfortable personal space that includes a family day-bed, desk and privacy curtain. You’ll have access to a playroom and family lounge.
Visiting the NICU
- Visiting hours: Parents or guardians (maximum two adults) are welcome in the NICU around the clock.
- Health screening: At the front desk, visitors must answer a few questions about their health before entering. This takes a few minutes. It helps protect babies from infections.
- Hand washing: We’ll ask visitors to wash their hands often.
What you can bring
To protect patients, we have a few restrictions on what visitors can bring:
- Stuffed animals are fine.
- Flowers and plants are not allowed.
- Mylar balloons are allowed, but latex balloons are not.
- Don’t wear jewelry or watches; this helps us prevent infections.
- Keep your cellphone sealed in a zip-top bag. Cellphones carry germs and are hard to clean.
- What Parents Need to Know About the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, Journal of the American Medical Association Pediatrics
- How You Can Participate in the Care of Your Baby in the NICU, American Academy of Pediatrics
- Caring for a Premature Baby: What Parents Need to Know, American Academy of Pediatrics
- The Newborn Intensive Care Unit, March of Dimes
- NICU Families Northwest
- Doernbecher NICU Families Supporting Families Facebook Group