The NICU treats babies born from 23 weeks gestation, who suffer from immature respiratory systems, and often require artificial respiration, using some of the most advance breathing apparatus in the world; digestive systems, that require intravenous feeding and gradual feeding through the digestive system, using strict and close monitoring of the premature baby's condition.
Routine laboratory tests and ultrasounds are conducted within the department, which allow doctors to test even the tiniest and most vulnerable babies, without having to move them to other departments.
A social worker in the NICU offers parents emotional and mental support and helps them deal with the welfare services, if needed. A pediatric psychiatrist is also available to help parents.
The staff gradually lowers the level of intensive medical care, and slowly hands over responsibility to the parents. When the preemie is stronger, we recommend using the "kangaroo approach" - during which the baby is taken out of the incubator, and laid on the naked chest of the mother or father. The baby, of course, is covered with a blanket. It has been proven that this method does not affect the body of the tiny baby, while at the same time s/he feels relaxed and increases bonding with parents.
After discharge, the tiny babies receive follow-up care at the Institute for Child Development, allowing intervention as needed.
Other than preemies, babies suffering from a variety of genetic disorders, such as respiratory, digestive, nervous and urinary conditions, are treated in the NICU.
In the NICU there are nine emergency stations, eight intermediate stations and an isolation room with negative air pressure that prevents viruses moving from the isolation room to the NICU. There are also 13 cots for babies in stable conditions, who are learning to feed orally, and their parents are learning to care for their child in anticipation of their return home.