Essentia Health Unveils New NICU, Women’s and Children’s Unit

Patients are set to move in Monday

FARGO, N.D. — Essentia Health unveils its new $4.1 million NICU and Women’s and Children’s Unit.

One doctor at Essentia had twins born prematurely three years ago, and seeing the new unit unveiled was especially meaningful for her.

“The first time I came down, we’ve known this project was coming, so I was able to see when it was just concrete walls, and I got very emotional, just knowing how this was going to change the family experience for parents and their little ones,” Stefanie Gefroh Ellison, Physician Division Chair for Inpatient Services, said.

There are 14 private rooms, and the space can let families be more relaxed.

“I would never trade the camaraderie we had with other parents, their kids were in the NICU at the same time, but you feel bad. We always needed two rocking chairs with twins, if you’re searching for another one you don’t want to take it away from someone else,” Ellison said.

One of the innovative things about the NICU is that each baby will have the camera on them. Families can watch a livestream video of their little one on an app and website.

It’s all about making sure families have peace of mind.

“Just take it a day at a time. Babies are built to face these challenges. Some days are big highs are wins and other days you feel like it’s a setback,” Ellison said.

Besides the NICU, there’s also an area for postpartum patients, where mothers can relax, and even get massage therapy.

In the pediatric unit, there’s fun, colorful things to play with, all designed with kids in mind.

“We know from studies a well–designed hospital will reduce the stress and anxiety a lot of patients and families feel, it accelerates the recovery, shortens hospital stays, reduces pain medication, lessens pain and promotes a sense of well–being,” Rich Vetter, Chief Medical Officer at Essentia, said.

Patients are set to move into the new units on Monday.

Categories: Local News, North Dakota News