Newborns kept cozy with new radiant warmer

Dave
Dave Mathieson
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Five-month old baby, Logan Adams, is the first baby to test out the new radiant warmer at the Cumberland Regional Health Care Centre, and he gives it top marks. Surrounding Logan are: (clockwise, from left) registered nurse Pam Chappell, RN Vonnie Allan-Black, Cumberland Health Care Auxiliary past president Bob Janes, from the CHCA gift shop Anna Arbuckle, CHCA president Karen Wood, RN and Patient Care Leader Karen Crowe, and CHCA Highland Fling co-chair Jean Miller. 

UPPER NAPPAN - Newborn babies now have a one-stop shop where they can get all their health needs met.

"The radiant warmer arrived this week and was on the floor for the first time today," said Karen Crowe, registered nurse and Patient Care Leader on Thursday at the Cumberland Regional Health Care Centre. "I don't think you will find a staff member who's not excited to be able to put it into use."

The radiant warmer keeps a baby warm while physicians and nurses administers to the babies health needs, whether it an IV, oxygen or CPR.

"It will be used at least one time after every delivery, even if it's just for the physician exam where we need the warming part of it," said Crowe. "But if you have a sick baby that needs to go through the full resuscitation, it has the ability to do that, so you can go from the bare minimum needs, right through to helping our most sick babies."

The maternity ward at the CRHCC delivered 187 babies in 2012, and have delivered 53 so far this year, so the radiant warmer will get lots of use.

"It's a place to keep baby warm. You don't have to keep them covered up with blankets to keep them from getting chilled or cold. You can do a full assessment on a baby without covering them."

It's a major upgrade from their 15-year-old equipment.

"It has a few more bells and whistles and is more contained so you don't have to transfer from one piece of equipment to the other or lug a lot of different pieces of equipment around. It's all together."

The radiant warmer cost close to $60,000.

"Just to get the base and the light at the top was close to $20,000 and every time you ad something to it, like the scale or the oxygen capacity or the suction capacity, you're adding three or four or five thousand dollars to the total cost," said Crowe.

It was purchased with help from the the Cumberland Health Care Auxiliary, which raised close to $40,000 last year, the bulk of which was raised at the Highland Fling, but also through sales at the hospital gift shop and coffee shop.

Purchases of new equipment are made possible by money raised by the auxiliary.

"The auxiliary has been very helpful," said Crowe.

"With the budget we have for health care in the hospitals sometimes it's hard to upgrade equipment," she added. "As long as what you have is working, it may not be top notch, but as long as it's still working you use it.

"The auxiliary put a lot of money into helping us out," she went on to say. "We were expecting the bare basics and they gave us a lot more than what we were anticipating, so they went above and beyond what we expected."

The auxiliary has been hosting the Highland Fling for 30 years, and the Mother's Day weekend in May will be their 31st year.

"Last year we hoped to raise $30,000 and we exceeded that number," said Jean Miller, Highland Fling co-chair. "This year is our 31st year and our goal is to raise $31,000."

Every cent raised goes back into equipment for the hospital.

Asked what is on her future wish list, Crowe said fetal heart monitors.

"We use them when the moms are in labour or we use when a they've had a car accident or a fall and you have to listen to the baby," said Crowe. "We have three of those that are un-repairable and need to be replaced, so these are the next three items on the wish list."

dmathieson@amherstdaily.com

   

 

Organizations: Cumberland Regional Health Care Centre, Cumberland Health Care Auxiliary

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