Our CMN mediathon to benefit Bakersfield Memorial Hospital and the Lauren Small Children's Medical Center is Wednesday. And, we'd really like to hear from you.
Every year during the Children's Miracle Network mediathon, we ask the nurses at Memorial Hospital what's on their wish list for the coming year.
With your generous donations last year, the nurses number one wish was granted.
This year, there are two items they want to continue enhancing medical care for the tiniest babies who come into this world, ahead of schedule.
When babies are born prematurely in Kern County, most of them are brought Memorial Hospital's neo-natal intensive care unit.
Tender loving care for the tiniest of tots is provided around the clock.
"It's a job, and that's what we're trained to do. But, it's much more than that. It's an honor and a privilege, and we're taking care of the most precious reasons for living," said Christina Rudie, R.N., Memorial NICU staff nurse.
To meet and perhaps surpass their high standard of care, NICU nurses have two items on their wish list this year.
They need more C-PAP machines. C-PAP stands for "Continuous Positive Airway Pressure." The machines deliver oxygen to the babies' tiny lungs to help them breathe.
"We have some old ones. We would love some new ones which are digital readouts, more accurate. We only have eight, and we have 19 beds in this area and a total of 31 beds, so we'd like more of these to help our littlest patients breathe easier," said Bettina Kinsman, R.N., Memorial staff nurse.
Nurses are also asking for more co-bedding cribs, essential for prematurely born twins in their first weeks of life.
"When twins are in utero, that's all they know. They're together with each other and then you bring them into a new environment and they're not with each other," said Kelly Younger, R.N., Memorial NICU staff nurse.
Julie Billington is mother to twin preemie boys.
Emotions rush to the surface when she thinks about Jesse and Jentry being separated at birth, and the relief she felt when they were placed in a makeshift co-bedding crib loaned to the NICU from Pediatrics.
"The day I came in and saw them together, it was just really special because they hadn't been together for quite a few weeks. And, to see them together, cuddling with each other, it was really important for me, the mom, and for them as babies," said Billington.
Two important items on the Memorial nurses' wish list, and with your help, we'll make those wishes come true.
"That's why we love CMN, because you get us the equipment we need so that we can take care of these kids right here," said Rudie.
Our Children's Miracle Network mediathon is Wednesday, December 12th from 5 a.m. to 7 p.m.
The money you pledge will benefit children's medical care at Bakersfield Memorial Hospital, and remember the money raised here stays here.