|Neonatal Intensive Care Unit|
These doctors are specially trained and highly experienced in providing care for very ill or premature babies. During and after delivery, they lead the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) team, and often consult on high-risk pregnancy care. Since complications can occur unexpectedly during labor and delivery, neonatologists are on-site 24 hours a day. Meet our Neonatologists.
Pediatric Subspecialty Physicians
Our subspecialists each have extensive training and certification focused on a select pediatric area. This includes the full range of experts required for comprehensive NICU care: pediatric cardiologists, gastroenterologists, neurologists, pulmonologists and other subspecialists.
Neonatal Nurse Practitioner
A neonatal nurse practitioner is a registered nurse with a Master’s degree who assists with admissions and procedures in the NICU and assist the neonatologist to manage babies’ care in the ICN.
Our Neonatal Nurse Practitioners are:
- Cara Clark
- Kim Gustafson
- Margaret Keith
- Mary Kuhns
- Janine Morrell
- Bill Nix
- Carol Otto
- Shari Steffensrud
- Vicki Zier
A neonatal nurse is specially trained to care for sick newborns, premature babies and their families. A registered nurse (RN) and licensed practical nurse (LPN) help plan and coordinate baby’s care. This may include monitoring and assessing your baby, administering medication or treatments, assisting with procedures, and family education.
Team Leader / Charge Nurse
There is a registered nurse for each shift who is in charge of unit staffing, patient assignments, assisting staff, and handling any issues during that shift.
The respiratory therapists in the NICU are trained to provide respiratory care to babies. They provide airway care, administer respiratory medications, test blood samples, and assist the nurse with assessment and care. They also manage the respiratory equipment that helps your baby to breathe.
Tacoma General NICU Transport Team
The transport team is a subgroup of the NICU RNs and Respiratory Therapists. They are trained to stabilize and transport babies from other hospitals or locations.
Case managers are registered nurses with NICU experience. A case manager will be assigned to your baby upon admission. Their goal is to meet with you within 72 hours of admission. Case managers and social workers will work together to help with the ongoing care of your baby. When your baby is transferred to the ICN they will help you with family education, scheduling ‘rooming-in’ times for you and your baby prior to you taking your baby home, and arranging follow-up appointments.
Clinical educators are registered nurses who act in an educational, research and leadership role to promote optimal nursing care. They are in charge of running residency programs and setting up mentors for new nurses, providing continuing education for the NICU/ICN staff, and maintaining policies and procedures for the NICU and ICN.
A neonatal social worker is assigned to all parents who have a baby in the NICU. Their goal is to meet with you within 72 hours of your admission to do a specific assessment of your family’s needs. The social worker works closely with your case manager to provide support during this experience.
The NICU pharmacist assists the Neonatologist/ Neonatal Nurse Practitioners
in selecting and monitoring medications for your baby.
A dietitian is responsible for assisting the Neonatologist/ Neonatal Nurse Practitioners
to ensure your baby’s daily nutritional needs are met and your baby grows normally.
A unit secretary is often the first person to greet parents and visitors as they enter the NICU/ICN. They manage the telephones and the intercom system.
Support partners are responsible for maintaining the readiness and cleanliness of the patient care areas.