Giving more and more premature babies a fighting chance for survival, Bai Jerbai Wadia Children’s Hospital augmented it’s neo-natal intensive care (NICU) facilities on Thursday by increasing its number of beds from 75 to 110. Now, the hospital has the country’s largest NICU, said Wadia’s CEO.
The Shree Siddhivinayak Ganpati Temple Trust donated 20 NICU beds with warmers and 20 cribs to the hospital. The NICU’s cutting edge facilities also include 16 ventilators, of which two are high frequency ventilators with nitric oxide, multipart monitors, high-end medicine delivering equipment, diagnostic equipment, SiPAP machines and neonatal dialysis, all under one roof.
The infant (a baby not more than a month old) mortality rate of Maharashtra is 25 deaths per 1,000 live births. “The target is to reduce the infant mortality rate to 17 per 1,000 live births,” said health minister Suresh Shetty at the inaugration of the facility.
Dr Minnie Bodhanwala, CEO of Wadia Hospital, said, “It is a matter of great pride and satisfaction that we now house the largest NICU facility in the country through which we will be able to provide healthcare to many more newborns with state-of-the-art facilities.” “After escalating the NICU bed strength to 110, we will discard the five old beds,” said Dr Ashwini, medical superintendent, Wadia Hospital.
Mumbai’s 1.2 crore population needs at least 1,200 NICU beds, as mandated by the World Health Organization (WHO) say doctors. However, even with Wadia Hospital’s augmented strength, not more than 350 NICU beds are available in the city for sick new borns.