Chicago Area NICU Visits

The Infant Special Care Unit at Evanston Hospital

The Infant Special Care Unit (ISCU) is a 44 bed level IIIB neonatal intensive care unit located at Evanston Hospital, the flagship facility of NorthShore University HealthSystem. As the principal academic affiliate of the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine, we have a strong commitment to education and research that is complemented by an emphasis on teamwork and the delivery of excellent clinical care. Our neonatologists work closely with the nursing staff and members of our Perinatal Family Support Center to provide family-centered care to about 600 newborns annually, with problems ranging from extreme prematurity to complex congenital anomalies requiring surgical correction. Particular strengths of our program include a very active nursing research program that promotes principles of evidence-based medicine; a close and collegial relationship with our busy maternal-fetal medicine group; and a state-of-the-art simulation center that allows us to provide instruction in advanced neonatal resuscitation topics and carry out team-building exercises.

Newborn Care at Lurie Children’s Hospital and at Prentice Women’s Hospital

The opening of the Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital in June 2012 permitted all newborn services provided by the Division of Neonatology in the Department of Pediatrics at Northwestern University to be consolidated at the single downtown Chicago campus that includes the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern Memorial Hospital, the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago, and Prentice Women’s Hospital. The 26 faculty members provide care for infants in the 44-bed single room NICU at Lurie Children’s Hospital with over 500 admissions per year and in the adjacent 86-bed Renee Schine Crown NICU at Prentice Women’s Hospital with over 1500 admissions per year and serving one of the largest delivery services in the country with over 13,000 deliveries per year. A collaborative care approach involving families, nurses, nurse practitioners, and medical and ancillary specialty support provides a culture that emphasizes safety and quality within a family-friendly, developmentally-supportive environment. Both facilities provide the teaching platform for Northwestern University Medical Students, Pediatric Residents and the 10 fellows in Neonatology and provide the infrastructure for integrated basic and clinical-translational investigation in pulmonary hypertension, prevention of neurologic injury, and the genetic basis for neonatal and childhood lung disease.

The Renée Schine Crown Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Rush University Medical Center

The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Rush moved to a brand new space intentionally designed to provide a single room for each infant in March 2014. The NICU was designed to bring families physically closer to their health care team to enhance communication and improve privacy. Each room contains all the necessary monitoring devices and medical supplies, as well as comfortable seating for family, a breast pump, and a refrigerator to store breast milk.

To make our large unit more intimate and family friendly, Rush created three distinct “neighborhoods” within the NICU, which are graphically designated with themes of flowers, stars, and prairie. These neighborhoods have separate work stations for clinicians, which are all close to patient rooms. An advanced technology infrastructure enables virtual communication with all personnel, the patient room, and monitors from anywhere in the unit. Close proximity to medications and radiology means faster delivery of care.

The NICU team is led by Neonatologists who are in house 24/7, along with Neonatal Nurse Practitioners and pediatric residents. The interdisciplinary NICU team also includes neonatal nurses, pediatric pharmacists, respiratory therapists, dietitians, social workers, a discharge planner, certified lactation consultants, and certified breastfeeding peer counselors, all working together to bring state-of-the-art quality care to the bedside from a family-centered approach.

One of the premier programs at Rush is The Rush Mothers’ Milk Club, an evidence-based hospital lactation program that empowers parents to provide human milk for their newborn and premature infants through sharing the science behind human milk and lactation. The goal is to ensure that NICU infants receive as much human milk as possible for the longest time.

Another premier program is the Fetal and Neonatal Medicine program where a team of specialists, including Maternal-Fetal Medicine, Neonatology, Pediatric subspecialties, advanced practice nurses, social workers, and other staff utilize the latest technologies to provide comprehensive care to expectant parents and their physicians for pregnancies confronting a fetal anomaly, as well those with uncertain outcomes. Many of these infants spend extended time in the NICU.
The Rush Neonatal Team believes that babies do best when families and healthcare providers work together in a partnership where everyone is respected and valued. To foster this partnership, parents have 24/7 access to their infants and are essential participants in infant caregiving and decision making. Our unit and team structure was built around, and is committed to this philosophy of care.

The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at the Comer Children’s Hospital of the University of Chicago

The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at the Comer Children’s Hospital of the University of Chicago is a 71 bed level IIID neonatal intensive care unit. The University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine is one of the leading medical centers in the country, and, as its principle NICU, we have a strong commitment to education and research that is complemented by an emphasis on teamwork and the delivery of excellent clinical care. We are the referral center for approximately 16,000 annual births from 8 hospitals in our perinatal network. Our neonatologists work closely with the nursing staff and members of our Perinatal Family Support Center to provide family-centered care to about 750 newborns annually, with problems ranging from extreme prematurity to complex congenital anomalies requiring surgical correction. Particular strengths of our program include a very active neonatal follow-up program that allows us to gather excellent data on multiple clinical research projects; a close and collegial relationship with our busy maternal-fetal medicine group; and a close working relationship with our colleagues at NorthShore Hospital in Evanston, IL.