Clark Memorial Hospital to begin renovation for Level II neonatal intensive care unit in Southern Indiana

June 16, 2017

Clark Memorial Hospital will begin to renovate the existing nursery space to prepare for its Level II Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). This venture headed by Orange Construction & Restoration will allow the hospital to repurpose the nursery and install the new equipment necessary to care for the hospital’s tiniest patients. The $50,000 nursery update began Wednesday, June 14 and is expected to be complete in six weeks.

During construction, the nursery will be temporarily relocated to a secure location on the fifth floor, the labor and delivery unit, of the hospital. The scope of the project includes the addition of oxygen and suction hook ups, replacing the windows, cosmetic updates, adding electrical outlets, and converting sinks to “touchless.” In addition, tracks will be placed in the ceiling in order to hang privacy curtains between the bed spaces. Requests for equipment have also been submitted and include external feeding pumps, transcutaneous bili-meters, and new neonatal code carts.

“For us, it’s not just about the project, it’s about the community,” said Ruth Schmidt, chief operating officer at Clark Memorial Hospital. “We will do everything we can to make sure the renovation of the nursery creates the least amount of disruption possible for the patients of Clark Memorial Hospital. Everything that’s available today will remain available throughout the project.” Schmidt said.

Once complete, the Level II NICU at Clark Memorial Hospital will be equipped to care for infants delivered as early as 32 weeks gestation depending on the infant’s condition or diagnosis. These infants typically have medical conditions that are expected to resolve quickly. This will be the only Level II NICU in southern Indiana, which is affiliated with Norton Children’s Hospital. 

Ellee Humphrey, director of inpatient and women’s services at Clark Memorial said, “In addition to the cosmetic changes occurring, nurses and physicians have been participating in NICU-specific training provided by Norton Children’s Neonatology and the Nursing Institute at Norton Healthcare to help prepare for the advanced level of care the patients will need. With their support we are better equipped to improve neonatal care in Southern Indiana.”