NICU reunion brings together patients, caregivers who saved their lives

Celebration of babies cared for at Norton Women’s & Children’s Hospital

There were lots of hugs and smiles at Norton Women’s & Children’s Hospital as more than 1,000 former neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) patients and their families reunited with the doctors, nurses and other clinicians who cared for them during their time in the hospital.

Every summer, the hospital hosts its annual NICU reunion. This year, attendees enjoyed a kids’ play zone, sand activities and face painting. But the best part — at least for the physicians — is seeing all the children they treated as infants.

“These kids didn’t have the easiest start to life,” said Sarah Griffin, M.D., neonatal hospitalist, Norton Healthcare. “To see them living happy, active lives is amazing, and we’re proud to have helped them on their journey.”

Level III and Level IV NICUs
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Home to a Level III NICU, Norton Women’s & Children’s Hospital provides a high level of care to nearly 750 fragile newborns every year. Some spend just a few days in the unit, while others stay for months. Because of the specialized care provided, the NICU and staff become a second home and family during an extremely difficult time.

Babies who require even more intensive care are treated at Norton Children’s Hospital, home to Kentucky’s only Level IV NICU. There, pediatric surgeons and other providers repair complex birth defects and acquired conditions. Norton Children’s Hospital held its annual NICU reunion earlier this year.

Here are some pictures of the celebration in action: