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Expansion Project - 2014

WakeMed's newly expanded neonatal intensive care unit opened in February 2014 and added 12 patient beds, bringing the total number of NICU beds to 48.

Single-Room Care

The expansion also marked the introduction of "single-room care" for NICU patients at WakeMed, which allows for 27 of the NICU beds to be private rooms.  Single-room care in the NICU represents an extension of WakeMed's focus on patient- & family-centered care to our tiniest patients.  This format allows families to spend almost unlimited time with their baby and makes it easier for mothers to have privacy.

"Not only is the concept of care different, but the environment and approach is changing too," said Tom Young, MD, (Neonatology). "Improving the environment for families to spend quality time with their babies is very important and the single-room care concept allows us to do that."


Floor plan of new rooms


Inside one of the new rooms

Garden of Life

The theme for the expanded unit is 'Garden of Life' which includes artwork, lighting and colors pulled from nature to inspire physical and emotional growth and the restoration of hope. Patient rooms are arranged in neighborhoods to foster parental unity in the healing process and a sense of belonging.

"This is a significantly different environment than the NICU WakeMed has had in the past," added Dr. Young. "We want to make sure employees are prepared to adapt to the special needs of the NICU patients and their families."

The expansion of the NICU was part of Phase II of the WakeMed Foundation's Just For Kids Kampaign, a $20 million fundraising effort.


Garden of Life theme shown in the corridor