UC Davis Neonatal Intensive Care Unit
UC Davis Children’s Hospital’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) is a designated Level IV nursery for the Sacramento region. Its special care nursery is a Level II-designated unit for children who are seriously ill but expected to recover more rapidly.
The NICU admits infants who are either born at UC Davis or are transferred from other hospitals within our 33-county service area that stretches from Central California to the Oregon and Nevada borders.
The 49-bed combined NICU and special care nursery are staffed by neonatal caregivers 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Working with subspecialists in other fields, such as cardiology and pulmonology, our neonatologists provide expert care for infants with a variety of congenital and acquired health conditions, including:
- Birth asphyxia
- Congenital heart disease
- Congenital anomalies (birth defects)
- Infectious diseases like pneumonia
- Respiratory distress
U.S. News & World Report recently ranked Neonatology as a leader in its 2020-2021 rankings of children's hospitals in the United States. Being ranked in the magazine’s annual survey is a distinction given to only the top children's hospitals in the United States.
The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) is located within UC Davis Children's Hospital:
2315 Stockton Blvd.
Through close collaboration with perinatologists in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, as well as referring physicians from throughout Northern California, UC Davis Children’s Hospital neonatologists are able to plan for the care of infants diagnosed with congenital anomalies before birth.
Specialized diagnostic and therapeutic equipment in the NICU includes:
- Conventional mechanical ventilation
- Inhaled nitric oxide for respiratory distress for premature infants
- High-frequency ventilation using oscillator and jet ventilators to treat infants with severe respiratory distress
- Extra-corporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) or Extra-corporeal Life Support (ECLS) is available for severe respiratory failure, persistent pulmonary hypertension of the neonate, and congenital heart disease
- Specialized feeding evaluations for infants with craniofacial or development issues
- Whole body cooling (hypothermia) program for the treatment of neonatal hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy
Following treatment in the Intensive Care Nursery, premature and newborn infants may receive developmental evaluations and interventions and ongoing care from developmental pediatricians in the UC Davis high risk neonatal follow-up clinic.
We also provide consultive services for physicians caring for children throughout Northern California through the use of our pediatric telemedicine services. Telemedicine is a high-resolution video and audio fiber-optic system that makes pediatric subspecialists from the UC Davis Children’s Hospital immediately available to remote clinicians working in other hospitals that deliver newborns with unanticipated problems. Pediatric subspecialists, including neonatologists, cardiologists, neurologists and geneticists are available for consultation in cases where newborns are experiencing problems in hospitals that do not have these specialists. Often, as a result of these telemedicine consultations, infants are able to remain in their local hospital, eliminating the need to transport the infant away from their mother, families and community.