Elisabeth and Natalie were born on October 28, 2019, at Virginia Mason Memorial with heart and lung diseases. Elisabeth weighed 2 pounds, while Natalie weighed 1.5 pounds. The twins were cared for at Virginia Mason Memorial’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) – the only NICU within the Central Washington region – for 4 months until they were healthy enough to be sent home on February 28, 2020.
Both Elisabeth and Natalie received vital feeding therapy during their stay. The feeding team through Children’s Village is comprised of speech and physical therapists, public health nurses, dieticians, and NICU nurses. This supports a monthly average of 6 infants and children in our community with feeding challenges. A plan is created for each baby during their stay at the NICU, posted at crib side, and updated as progress is made. As readiness for discharge approaches, the family is introduced to Early Intervention services at Children’s Village for ongoing services at home. The goal is to provide a seamless transition from the NICU to home with clinicians the family has become comfortable and familiar with during their hospital stay.
When the girls were discharged home, the Early Intervention services continued at Children’s Village and with a home based therapy model. Both the feeding therapist and physical therapist from Children’s Village have followed the twins from their stay at the NICU to their current appointments at Children’s Village. Elisabeth and Natalie’s family has expressed how amazing Virginia Mason Memorial’s NICU staff were in their care of the twins and shared they could not be more thankful for the NICU and Children’s Village teams that supported them. Today, the twins weigh nearly 12 pounds each and are doing very well!
The vulnerable population in Yakima includes the 8 babies being cared for today at the Virginia Mason Memorial NICU. The needs in our valley don’t stop for a pandemic. Continue to show your support of children’s health by giving to The Memorial Foundation today here.