London NICU Project Will Save Lives

July 09, 2020 Posted in: Patients & Providers
Carly Grace and Anna Margaret Storm

Brandon and Jaclyn Storm’s pregnancy was deemed high risk early on, and the babies, Carly Grace and Anna Margaret, were expected to be premature. Jaclyn needed to stay near a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) or similar critical care facility. Otherwise, she and her babies could have died. When the twin girls were born prematurely on Sept. 10, 2005, the London couple’s joy was mixed with fear and exhaustion. They spent several months in Lexington so their babies could receive lifesaving care at a NICU, a 90-minute trip from their home.

Looking Back

Almost 14 years later, Brandon cries recalling the trauma his family endured. Carly was born weighing 1 pound, 10 ounces, and Anna was 3 pounds, 1 ounce. Brandon drove to Lexington every night after working eight to 10 hour days in London. He often had a friend or family member ride with him because it became too exhausting to drive safely.

The financial burden of finding a place to stay in Lexington was challenging, and eventually the family was placed in a home with a host. He said Carly would not have survived without the NICU, where she spent two months. The twins both had additional complications and needed specialized care.

“It was very touch and go for a while,” he said. “And the sad thing is, right next to us, a baby passed away. That makes it even more real.”

Establishing NICU Care in London

Staying close to home would have saved the family overwhelming stress and a lot of money. That’s why the Saint Joseph London Foundation is focused on fundraising for a Level II NICU at Saint Joseph London’s Birthing Center to help area families. It will be one of only two hospitals in southeastern Kentucky with both a birthing center and a NICU. This will allow the hospital to keep about 80% of the premature or at-risk babies in London for treatment.

Stories like the Storms’ are near to the hearts of the physicians and staff at Saint Joseph London, including President John C. Yanes, FACHE, CPPS. The hospital is the leading obstetrical provider in the area and delivers approximately 1,200 babies every year.

“Establishing a NICU at Saint Joseph London is an overarching priority as we remain unwavering in our commitment to improve timely access to vital medical care to the residents we serve in a six-county service area,” Yanes said. “The NICU will build on and expand existing inpatient services for some of the most medically vulnerable patients.”

The Birthing Center opened in 2010, and in 2017 the hospital delivered 1,203 babies. Of those, 86 infants required treatment in a NICU, and 69 of them could have been cared for in London if the NICU was available. The Saint Joseph London NICU will cost approximately $1.4 million.

You can support this important project by contacting the Saint Joseph London Foundation at [email protected].

A version of this article originally appeared in the Spring 2020 edition of Spirit of Health. For more stories like this one, subscribe to Spirit of Health magazine today.

Recent Updates

The Brilliant Light of Love and Humankindness

JAN 19, 2022

When Pamela Smallwood, CMA, CHI Saint Joseph Medical Group – Primary Care in Mount Sterling, found herself face-to-face with a patient in the midst of heartbreak, she took action to fill the void.

Read More Additional information about The Brilliant Light of Love and Humankindness | Spirit of Health | CHI Saint Joseph Health

What is Neurorehab?

JAN 17, 2022

Recovering from a stroke or any condition that affects a person's balance or coordination requires a specialized form of therapy. Physical therapist Graham Gandee describes neurorehab at CHI Saint Joseph Health – Outpatient Rehabilitation.

Read More Additional information about What is Neurorehab? | Spirit of Health | CHI Saint Joseph Health

Weight Loss Surgery Began ‘A Wonderful Journey’

JAN 12, 2022

Hall, 52, of Lexington had tried for years to lose weight, but it wasn’t working. She’d lose pounds, then gain it back. She finally made the decision - “the best decision I ever made” - to have weight loss surgery.

Read More Additional information about Weight Loss Surgery Began ‘A Wonderful Journey’ | Spirit of Health | CHI Saint Joseph Health