Taking care of newborns

Baptist Memorial Hospital-Union County has taken new steps to provide more services to newborns at the hospital.

The announcement of a partnership between Baptist and North Mississippi Medical Center in Tupelo to enhance neonatal services is good news for those women having babies here in New Albany.

Under the program, a remotely controlled robot allows a neonatologist in Tupelo to examine infants at the hospital in New Albany almost as if he were in the room with the infant.

“This partnership will enhance the services we offer newborns, particularly those who need intensive care,” Walter Grace, administrator at the New Albany hospital, said. “Patients can now receive this service without leaving New Albany.

“The evaluation will come from physicians trained specifically to handle the most complex and high-risk situations in newborns.”

Baptist delivered more than 1,100 babies last year. About 10 percent of babies need some sort of intensive care, according to Dr. Bryan Darling, neonatologist at the Tupelo hospital.

The announcement of this additional service for newborns comes as the New Albany hospital is completing a $12 million addition that will add a new emergency room to the facility.

Baptist continues to make the kinds of strides that will keep it a successful and growing community non-profit hospital.

Baptist’s success is important to our community’s growth and vitality.