SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Saturday, miracle babies had a chance to reunite with their caregivers at Baystate medical center.
22News was there as the NICU graduates reunited with the Doctors and nurses who helped them become the healthy babies they are today. For most new parents, a baby is born, they spend a few days in the hospital and then go home. But for some parents that’s not the case.
Here in western Massachusetts about 600 newborns spend time in the neonatal intensive care unit at Baystate children’s hospital each year. McCartney Ford revealed that “It’s hard when you don’t get to take your baby home and you don’t know when you’re going to take your baby home.”
Saturday morning it was a reunion like no other, NICU graduates were reunited with their doctors and nurses. Some for the first time since going home.
Kelly Garner said “A little bit after he was born they noticed some problems with the coloring in his legs, so they took him off to the NICU and realized he had a blood clot in one of his arteries. It was really scary because obviously it was unexpected not knowing what was wrong for a while.”
Hundreds of parents at the reunion had another chance to thank the doctors and nurses for helping their miracle babies make it through their first days of life. It was also a chance for parents who spent months at the hospital with their babies to see other families who went through those same scary moments.
Ford added “She was completely a surprise, I went in for a routine check-up and we didn’t come home for 2 months. She’s thriving better than mostly babies are and it’s all because of the NICU here.”
One of the NICU parents, Gretchen Harris, had such a positive experience here at Baystate that she left her current job to become a NICU nurse here.
Harris told 22News “Because of our wonderful experience with our girls here at Baystate, I decided to come and work at Baystate. It’s a very different world being a NICU mom. As much as I thought I could empathize and know what the families, there’s no way to know unless you go through it yourself.”
The NICU at Baystate medical center is the only in the area and ranked at the highest level possible for Neonatal intensive care.