The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit

At AUBMC

The neonatal intensive care unit at the American University of Beirut Medical Center AUBMC is a state of the art unit considered a center of excellence in Lebanon and the region. It receives referrals from all over Lebanon as well as neighboring countries. The NICU delivers the most advanced and sophisticated care to a variety of complex patients from the extremely premature at the limit of viability to the challenging surgical cases including the complicated cardiac patients requiring highly specialized surgery and post op care. Patients of different nationalities and with varieties of diseases are treated by a multidisciplinary team of physicians, surgeons, nurses, social workers, psychologist, other supporting staff and the parents of the babies making the unit an ideal environment for collaboration and team work. The division of neonatology is one of the largest services in the department of pediatrics with approximately 1400 admissions per year, managed by close to 51 nursing staff with 2 nurse managers, and a medical team of 11 including attendings, fellows, residents, interns and medical students.

The new state of the art Neonatal Intensive Care Unit NICU was inaugurated in November 2011 and can accommodate up to 23 patients in collaboration with the administration, nursing staff, and the department of pediatrics. The unit fulfils the latest recommendations and complies with joint commission requirements. The unit includes highly specialized equipment and technologies, with an isolation room, a procedure room, and a special room dedicated for parents.

Programs

Hypothermia Program:

In 2015, we established the Hypothermia program in our unit as a standard of care, the first in Lebanon. The medical and nursing staff was trained by experts from the USA to provide hypothermia for babies who suffered from hypoxia ischemia using state of the art equipment.

Central Line-associated Bloodstream Infection (CLABSI):

The program was initiated in early 2014 and the NICU has been CLABSI free for the last 15 months.

Point of care:

The NICU received an ultrasound machine to be used by the trained neonatologists and fellows at bedside for immediate application to save time and improve outcome. Also a point of care blood gas machine will be placed in the unit. This will significantly contribute to the quality of care, and better health outcomes.

Open Heart Cardiac surgery:

care is provided by the NICU pre and post op with excellent outcomes

Extra Corporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO):

most recently the unit in collaboration with the divisions of pediatric cardiology, cardiovascular surgery performed the first newborn ECMO case in the country.

Early Intervention program:

initiated in 2014 to improve developmental outcomes in the NICU

Fellowship Program:

The program started in 2003 as a one year program, became a two year program in 2010, and was approved as a 3 year program in 2014. The presence of a fellow in the NICU has had an immense direct positive impact on the care in the unit. Currently the fellowship program hosts 3 fellows since 2014. This program attracts applicants from all over Lebanon on yearly basis.