Emily’s mom went into unexpected labor, 13 weeks too early. Emily was born weighing just two pounds, two ounces.
After a week stay in the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Riverside Methodist Hospital, she was transferred to Nationwide Children’s Hospital main campus for further treatment. During her 100-day stay, Emily endured a bowel obstruction, MRSA infection and had several blood transfusions. However, it was there in the NICU that she also made great strides – little Emily began to grow and learned to eat on her own.
With the help of her medical team, she is now a vibrant, happy five-year-old with a smile that lights up the room.
“Nationwide Children’s means everything to us. Without their help we wouldn’t have Emily. They watched her for any signs of something going wrong. They quickly reacted to any change in her stats. They were able to catch the MRSA infection before it did any damage to her fragile little body,” says Emily’s mom, Melody.
Each year more than 4,400 babies receive the highest level of intensive care at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. As the largest neonatal center in the nation, Nationwide Children’s is dedicated not only to treating but ultimately preventing all complications of prematurity, including Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia (BPD) and neurodevelopmental abnormalities. This extraordinary number of patients allows Nationwide Children’s to provide the highest level of experience and translate that expertise into programs that addresses fetal diagnosis and therapies, across the spectrum of newborn conditions, to essential long-term follow-up care.
Melody says that in addition to Emily’s medical team, their family also received a lot of help from support staff.
“We always had people to put things in terms we could understand, and talk to us on the roughest days. It felt like the staff was our family for those three months. What else could I ask for, but for caregivers who knew my daughter as well as I did?” says Melody.
Emily’s smile is as bright as her personality. Some of her current favorites include the colors green and pink, the movie Toy Story, riding her bike and helping her mom and dad cook.