Chester County Hospital Introduces New NICU Treatment Program

NICU Treatment ProgramNote: There is an infant manikin in the photo for reference purposes only. (Submitted Image)

WEST CHESTER, PA — Chester County Hospital’s (CCH) Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) has introduced therapeutic hypothermia treatment, which is a treatment program for infants born with concerns for hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE).

HIE occurs when there is a lack of oxygen delivered to parts of the baby’s body, which can lead to problems in many organs, including the brain. Previously, babies born with HIE at CCH were transferred to two of Penn Medicine’s Philadelphia hospitals or to Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia to receive this therapy. Thanks to a generous local donor, CCH can now offer this cooling treatment to at-risk NICU babies.

“Starting this program is another demonstration of our ability to advance the quality of care that we provide,” said Dr. Lisa Drinker, Medical Director of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at CCH. “And we can provide it right here in Chester County.”

Therapeutic hypothermia – also known as cooling – is a treatment that decreases brain injury in babies with an at-risk delivery by lowering their body temperature and closely monitoring the baby over 72 hours. According to Dr. Drinker, within six hours of birth, babies are put on a special cooling mattress that maintains and regulates a proper body temperature and are closely monitored by the hospital’s trained neonatal staff. At the end of their treatment, the babies are gradually rewarmed and continue to receive ongoing NICU care.

Chester County Hospital’s priority is providing the highest-quality, family-centered neonatal care, while maintaining a sense of community,” stated Dr. Drinker. “I’ve been here for ten years, and Chester County Hospital has brought many breakthrough therapies and programs to this community to keep all of our babies healthy and cared for right in our neighborhood.”

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