For more than 26 years, Foothills Medical Centre’s neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) has provided care to newborns who critically need health care.
To recognize its efforts, the Taylor Family Foundation donated $10 million to fund a new state-of-the-art, two-story NICU at Foothills Medical Centre. The Taylor Family Foundation is a registered public philanthropic foundation that provides monetary gifts in areas such as health, education, history and the arts.
The new NICU will have 58 beds and provide level 3 care, which is the highest level of intensive care for infants and newborns. The expanded facility will also incorporate a hybrid model of both single rooms and open-concept spaces along with a new program called Family Integrated Care, which will help integrate parents into the care of their infant while in the NICU and help transition from the hospital to their home.
The new unit will also have couplet care rooms, where a postpartum parent and an infant can stay together. Family rooms will also be built to give parents an area to rest with older siblings.
All of these new facilities will help provide enhanced care for NICU patients, the Calgary Health Foundation said.
According to the Calgary Health Foundation, southern Alberta has the highest rate of critically ill and preterm births. One in eight infants in this category will require care in the NICU. In comparison, the national statistic is one in 10.
When these infants are born, they are immediately transferred to the NICU. As the population in Southern Alberta continues to grow, so does the demand and standard for specialized care.
“This state-of-the-art unit will become the flagship for neonatal care in southern Alberta and will also help attract the best and brightest medical professionals,” said Dr. Mark Anselmo medical director of the Calgary zone for Alberta Health Services.
The donation is the largest gift to the Calgary Health Foundation’s Newborns Need campaign, according to a Wednesday morning news release. The funding, along with money from the Alberta government and Alberta Health Services, will ensure the completion of the $152 million project.
“With this generous $10M donation from the Taylor Family Foundation, we are thrilled to announce the successful completion of the Newborns Need fundraising campaign,” said Kathleen MacPherson, vice president of philanthropy for the Calgary Health Foundation.
“The investment made through this campaign will not only impact the ability to provide world-class care in a state-of-the-art NICU environment, but will also investigate the abnormally high rate of preterm births by furthering research in prediction, prevention and intervention.”
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