Simi Valley Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU)

Specialized and personalized care for newborns in need of treatment

Adventist Health Simi Valley’s eight-bed, level 2 neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) provides specialized and highly personalized care for babies who are born prematurely and/or with special medical needs.

As a level 2 NICU, we are able to provide all necessary care for approximately 95 percent of the babies born at our hospital at 30 weeks’ gestation or later who require specialized medical services. Our services include short-term respiratory ventilation, oxygen therapy, IV parenteral nutrition, management of physician-prescribed medications, physical and occupational therapy, and more.

The NICU operates in a manner that mimics conditions in the womb, offering a familiar, soothing and healing environment for your baby. To achieve this, lights are kept low, sounds are soft and soothing, and incubators provide a warm and comforting place for your baby. In addition, our care team practices cluster care, an approach that minimizes the number of times they interrupt your baby’s rest.

A focus on bonding

Our top priority is to provide ample opportunity for you to bond with your baby. Your care team will make sure you are able to hold your baby as much as possible, have skin-to-skin contact and spend other intimate moments with your newborn. Research has proven, over and over, this time with your baby has a profoundly positive effect on them — physically, psychologically and emotionally.

As a designated Baby-Friendly Hospital, our commitment to mother-baby bonding includes helping moms and their newborns successfully breastfeed — an activity that has many lifelong health benefits for both mom and baby.

Your NICU care team

Adventist Health Simi Valley’s NICU is led by a group of highly skilled and experienced neonatologists from the UCLA Medical Center. Neonatologists are physicians who specialize in caring for babies born prematurely and/or with particular illnesses or conditions.

Other physician specialists are called upon to provide their expertise, as needed. This includes such specialties as pediatric ophthalmology (eye health) and pediatric cardiology.

We ensure that two nurses on the night shift and one on the day shift are clinical lactation specialists, who can answer questions about breastfeeding and work with mom and baby to ensure a successful and pleasant breastfeeding experience. All of our nurses are specially trained in the care of neonatal babies.

In addition to physicians and nurses, our team includes respiratory therapists, physical therapists and occupational therapists from Adventist Health Simi Valley’s Child Development Center, and a pediatric nutritionist.

Frequently asked questions about the NICU

Who is allowed to visit the NICU and when?

Parents of NICU babies may visit anytime, day or night, with the exception of brief periods during shift changes — 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 a.m. and again between 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Other visitors may come during the hospital’s normal visiting hours — 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. — but must be accompanied by the baby’s parents. Brothers and sisters of the NICU baby must be age 2 or older to visit and must have up-to-date, full immunization records. Please note that, during flu season, the NICU may restrict visits to protect the health of our babies.

What am I allowed to bring into the NICU?

Please speak with an NICU nurse before bringing any item into the NICU. In general, clean clothing and blankets may be brought in for the baby. Stuffed animals and other similar items will be placed into a plastic bag before coming into contact with the baby’s care area. Small, personal-use cameras are also typically allowed.