The Alexander Center for Neonatology at Winnie Palmer Hospital is one of the largest Neonatal Intensive Care Units (NICU) in the United States. The Alexander Center for Neonatology is capable of the highest level of care for high-risk newborns, and is organized to provide highly skilled, life-saving interventions to critically ill newborns.

What types of newborn complications are treated in the NICU?

The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit is organized to provide highly skilled, life-saving interventions to critically ill newborns suffering from prematurity, respiratory distress, cardiac disease, congenital anomalies, multi-system organ failure and other problems.

The NICU is also one of only 11 Children's Medical Services designated Regional Perinatal Intensive Care Centers (RPICC) program in Florida. The Winnie Palmer Hospital NICU has 112 beds, including 52 Level III (the highest level) and 60 Level II (intermediate level) beds.

How do we care for these special babies?

Cutting edge medical equipment plays a critical role in the care of critically ill newborns. The equipment utilized in the NICU includes:

  • Extracorporeal Life Support Pumps (ECMO Machines)
  • High Frequency Ventilators
  • Nitric Oxide Delivery Systems
  • Siemens Servo-I Ventilators
  • Phillips Inteleview and Merlin Monitors
  • Vapotherm assisted support
  • Continuous Positive Pressure Ventilation Assist Devices   
  • Flow Meters and regulators
  • Medical gas blenders
  • Defibrillators
  • Emergency carts
  • Incubators
  • Infant warmers
  • Infusion pumps
  • Blood warmers
  • Warming lights and lamps
  • Phototherapy lights
  • Weighing scales
  • Breastfeeding scales
  • Diaper scales
  • Specific gravity machine
  • Procedure instrument trays
  • Hematocrit machine
  • Glucose machine
  • Hemachron
  • I-Stat 

How many babies do we treat in the NICU each year?

More than 1,200 babies are admitted to the NICU each year - with more than 26,000 babies having been successfully treated since the unit opened in 1975. Our NICU consistently demonstrates the best outcome statistics in Florida for low birth-weight babies.

Support the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit

As a community owned, not-for-profit hospital, Winnie Palmer Hospital relies on support from our community to fund crucial expansion efforts, renovations and the purchase of supplies and new medical equipment. We invite you to make a donation to support the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.

What impact does the staff make on the lives of these precious newborns?

Babies are cared for by neonatal team members educated and proficient in the management of their behavioral and developmental needs within the context of their urgent medical needs. A multidisciplinary medical team consisting of physicians, nurses, respiratory therapists, social workers, developmentalists, and chaplains cares for each baby. These disciplines incorporate their knowledge of gestational development and personal choices of the parents into care practices that ensure the environment encourages optimal growth and development. The family friendly, sound controlled environment allows the flexible use of individualized lighting, cycled lighting, and medical equipment to maximize both medical and neurological outcomes. Infants are routinely assessed by caregivers and NIDCAP observers for stress cues that will direct the manner in which patient care activities are delivered.

Neonatal Transport Team

Our goal is to have mothers deliver their baby at Winnie Palmer Hospital.  In special instances when this is not possible, the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit comes to the mother.  Our specially trained team brings life-saving equipment to mom's bedside, wherever she is.  Each year, nearly 250 babies in Central Florida are transported to our hospital in the full service Mobile Intensive Care Unit, a generous donation from the Children's Miracle Network.