“St. Mary’s Hospital recently purchased a newborn warmer which is being used in their labor and delivery suite. The funds for the warmer are from the Northern Region Greatest Need Fund in the Idaho Community Foundation and from the Berklund Foundation. Each Foundation contributed $5,000 towards the purchase of the equipment.
The Panda warmer and scale was purchased from GE Healthcare. In addition to keeping the infant warm while the doctor and nurse examine them, record their length and weight and check all vital signs the warmer also is equipped with easily accessible infant resuscitation equipment. It also contains an infant temperature probe and an in bed scale. According to the GE product information, the bed has an in bed X ray tray and adjustable procedure light.
“We really appreciate the contributions from the two foundations and are very fortunate to have this state-of-the-art infant warmer as a safety measure in our birthing suite,” said Barb Michels, RN, SMH OB coordinator. “Our first priority is to give the mom and dad an opportunity to bond right after birth. The infant warmer provides that extra security just in case. Our goal is to provide each family with a meaningful delivery whether it’s their first child or one of many. It’s a very special time for the family and for us. We balance the personal aspect of labor and delivery with the safety of having trained doctors and nurses and the proper equipment so the family has the comfort of knowing their baby is receiving personal care in the security of a safe environment. The infant warmer is a great addition to our OB program.”
The Panda warmer can also monitor the infant’s heart rate, pulse and changes in thermal demands. Any changes in the baby’s temperature alert the staff immediately. The GE Healthcare brochure says, Nurses balance human touch with medical technology. There’s more patient information available at the point of care to aid decision making… With better equipment you spend more time interacting with the parents, helping to make the birth a wonderful and miraculous experience.
“There’s no substitute for the loving warmth and care of the mom, but the Panda warmer is really important to help ensure and confirm that the baby is truly healthy,” said Michels. “We’re thankful for the generosity of the two Foundations.”
The Idaho Community Foundation is a statewide community foundation established in 1988. Grant making began in 1991 with a total of $164,033 distributed. Over $41 million has been distributed to a wide variety of philanthropic projects since then. The year 2008 ended with assets over $55 million. The Northern Region Greatest Need Fund is a fund within the Foundation designated for special projects to help northern Idaho.
The Berklund Foundation is a family foundation based in Greenacres, Washington. David Berklund, a trustee of the Foundation, and other family members were born at St. Mary’s Hospital. Their foundation has a history of providing funds to SMHC which have been used to help purchase a radiology viewing station, exam room tables and cryotherapy equipment.
Pam McBride, SMHC Grants Coordinator, prepared the grant applications to both foundations.