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Kalispell Regional Healthcare

Family-Centered Services

Neonatal Intensive Care Unit

Neonatal Intensive Care Unit Services

Family in the NICU Advanced care for premature or sick infants:
  • Monitoring and support of vital body functions
  • Intravenous therapy including antibiotics and total parenteral nutrition
  • Placement and maintenance of umbilical lines and peripherally inserted central catheters
  • Conventional and high-frequency ventilation
  • Nitric oxide
Support and care for families:
  • Lactation support
  • Family care conferences
  • Interdisciplinary rounds
  • Support services for families

Neonatal and Maternal Transport Services

NICU transport team Sometimes unexpected emergencies happen in a facility not equipped to care for the pregnant woman or sick newborn. Kalispell Regional Medical Center’s A.L.E.R.T. air ambulance program is proud to have a dedicated OB/NICU transport team and equipment available 24 hours a day to provide the care required to safely transport these special patients.

Whether the transport is via helicopter, airplane or ambulance, just one phone call activates the team, allowing the referring doctor to focus on taking care of the patient.

NICU Family Advisory Council

Parents and families are at the heart of the work we do in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. We know that parents and families have important insights about what we do well and what we could do better. They also bring rich experiences and many different resources to our efforts to provide the best care possible.

The NICU Family Advisory Council is made up of parents who have had one or more children in the NICU, as well as doctors, nurses and social workers from the NICU staff.

The mission of the council is to improve communication with and services to families while they are in the NICU and after they go home. Through the NICU Family Advisory Council, parents provide input on NICU policies and resources, as well as contribute their expertise on specific issues that affect families.

If you have had a child in the NICU and are interested in being part of the NICU Family Advisory Council, please call (406) 751-5391 for more information.

Reach Out and Read Program

Reading to a NICU baby Reach Out and Read is a nonprofit organization that gives young children a foundation for success by incorporating books into pediatric care and encouraging families to read aloud together.

The Reach Out and Read program builds on the unique relationship between parents and medical providers to develop critical early reading skills in children, beginning in infancy. The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Kalispell Regional Medical Center has brought the Reach Out and Read program to the bedside, encouraging parents to read to their newborns. Even though they may be premature and unable to do many of the things full-term infants do, premature babies respond to their parents' voices, especially to the rhythmic sounds of reading.

Evidence shows that Reach Out and Read families read together more often, and their children enter kindergarten with larger vocabularies and stronger language skills. During the preschool years, children served by Reach Out and Read score three to six months ahead of their non-Reach Out and Read peers on vocabulary tests. Even though school may seem like a long way off for these tiny patients, it is the goal of the NICU to provide every baby with the best start possible.