UC Davis Children’s Hospital
UC Davis Children’s Hospital
UC Davis Children's Neonatal Intensive Care Unit

UC Davis Children’s Hospital’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) is a designated Level III nursery for the Sacramento region. Its special care nursery is a Level II-designated unit for children who are seriously ill but expected to recover more rapidly.

The NICU admits infants who are either born at UC Davis or are transferred from other hospitals within our 33-county service area that stretches from Central California to the Oregon and Nevada borders.

The 49-bed combined NICU and special care nursery are staffed by neonatal caregivers 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Working with subspecialists in other fields, such as cardiology and pulmonology, our neonatologists provide expert care for infants with a variety of congenital and acquired health conditions, including:

  • Birth asphyxia
  • Congenital heart disease
  • Congenital anomalies (birth defects)
  • Jaundice
  • Infectious diseases like pneumonia
  • Respiratory distress

Through close collaboration with perinatologists in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, as well as referring physicians from throughout Northern California, UC Davis Children’s Hospital neonatologists are able to plan for the care of infants diagnosed with congenital anomalies before birth.

Specialized diagnostic and therapeutic equipment in the NICU includes:

  • Conventional mechanical ventilation
  • Inhaled nitric oxide for respiratory distress for premature infants
  • High-frequency ventilation using oscillator and jet ventilators to treat infants with severe respiratory distress
  • Extra-corporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) or Extra-corporeal Life Support (ECLS) is available for severe respiratory failure, persistent pulmonary hypertension of the neonate, and congenital heart disease
  • Specialized feeding evaluations for infants with craniofacial or development issues
  • Whole body cooling (hypothermia) program for the treatment of neonatal hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy

Following treatment in the Intensive Care Nursery, premature and newborn infants may receive developmental evaluations and interventions and ongoing care from developmental pediatricians in the UC Davis high risk neonatal follow-up clinic.