NICU stands for newborn intensive care unit. This is a nursery in a hospital that provides around-the-clock care to sick or premature babies. It has health care providers who have special training and equipment to give your baby the best possible care.
Let us understand the types of NICU and reasons why babies require NICU.
NICU has three levels
- Intensive care NICU
- Moderate level NICU
- Basic treatment NICU
In India, 15% of babies are born premature, which means that before 40 weeks, these babies are kept in level 3 NICU for extra care.
Reasons Why Your Baby Might Require NICU
Along with this, babies who weigh less than 2.5 kg or especially 1.8 kg are also kept in level 3 NICU.
For every 100 babies born in India, 10 %of the babies require NICU, for which we should be mentally prepared. The smaller the baby, the more days it takes.
Premature babies which weigh around 1.5kg, 1200grms or 1kg, require 1 or 1.5 months in NICU. The less the weight, the more time the baby requires to be in the NICU. Nowadays, in India, a child of 500 grams can be survived. But the survival rate of 500-700grams weighing babies is 40-80%. Baby weighing 700 grams- to 1kg is around 70-80%.
Baby weighing more than 1kg has chances of survival of 75-85% if taken care in NICU which has all the facilities. Babies weighing 1.5 and above have survival chances of 95% and above for premature babies.
The second common problem is difficulty in breathing in newborn babies which require NICU assistance. In India out of 100 newborn babies 10 do not cry at the time of the birth, which means there is a low supply of oxygen in the body, indirectly means less supply of oxygen in brain lungs and heart. When there is low supply of oxygen, babies organs get affected and these babies are classified under Hypoxic Ischemic Baby. These babies required to be in NICU.