Child Birth

The Billy Miller Neonatal Intensive Care Unit

Recognizing the advanced level of neonatal care available at Frederick Memorial Hospital, the Health Services Cost Review Commission granted FMH permission to begin operating as a Level III A Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. The designation as a NICU permits FMH to take care of babies as young as 28 weeks gestational age. In the past, babies born this premature were flown out to Baltimore or Washington, D.C. hospitals for care. Parents were separated from their newborns, and either mom or dad had to make the long trek to the city to be with the newest member of their family. But with the advent of this new capability, families can now stay together as Johns Hopkins Neonatologists take care of their preemie right here at home in Frederick County.

Although the great majority of newborn babies - almost 90 percent - are healthy and will not need high-risk newborn care, with more than 2,600 deliveries each year, the FMH BirthPlace staff recognizes the need for our NICU. To care for high-risk newborns in The Billy Miller Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, FMH has partnered with Johns Hopkins University Hospital in order to provide the best academic faculty and care available. The Neonatologists and Neonatal Nurse practitioners are employed by Johns Hopkins University Hospital and are located at FMH. Neonatologists, physicians who specialize in the care of high risk newborns, and neonatal nurse practitioners are in house 24 hours a day, 7 days-a-week, every day of the year. If your baby requires specialized care, these neonatal specialists are always in the hospital.

There is a close working relationship between the Neonatology group members, your obstetrician, and your baby’s Pediatrician.

  • A Neonatologist may be asked to meet with you before the infant’s birth to discuss issues that impact on the health of the fetus and/or the newborn infant after birth.
  • If there are complications during the pregnancy, labor, or delivery, or if a Cesarean section delivery is performed, then a member of the Neonatology team may be asked to be present and to care for the newborn immediately after birth.
  • If the need arises, your physician may ask a member of the Neonatology group to consult or evaluate your newborn in the hospital.

In most cases, infants are stabilized and then sent on to the Newborn Nursery. Sometimes, however, the infant needs to be admitted to the NICU for an observation period or for treatment. Some babies, and particularly premature infants, may need to spend more extended time in the NICU.