LAWTON, OK (KSWO)- Comanche County Memorial Hospital is celebrating the hospital's fourth year with its Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. To help celebrate, they invited all the kids and their families who were in the unit for a reunion full of fun.
Babies born at 32 weeks can be delivered at CCMH where they can stay in the unit until they're healthy enough to go home. Dr. Abhishek Makkar says having this reunion is as much for the staff as it is for the returning families.
"It means a lot to us. We took care of them when they were sick in the NICU. Some of them were in incubators. It gives us immense satisfaction and joy to see them growing like healthy babies, developing these milestones."
Ashley White brought her twin boys to the reunion, who were both born prematurely. They stayed in the NICU for 2 weeks.
"We didn't plan on them coming then. When we went to the hospital and stuff, we tried to stop it from happening. Thank God, we were where we were at. We were able to stay here. Which I'm very thankful for that. They both did okay here. Neither one of them had to be moved, almost at one point."
White says her twins will be 3 in March and they are doing great. She says she enjoys getting to come to the reunion and see the nurses and doctors who took care of her and her boys.
"We're going to come until they stop inviting us. Like I said, I enjoy getting to see everybody. I don't know. You can tell they care. They cared when we were up here. I didn't feel like we were just somebody else. My babies were their babies."
Dr. Makkar says the NICU has been very beneficial to patients here in Southwest Oklahoma, so they don't have to travel to get the care needed.
"Before we had this NICU, all of these families were getting transferred if they had a premature baby or a baby who is sick were getting transferred to OU Children's Hospital. With us having this NICU for the last 3 or 4 years we have been able to keep more than a thousand patients in our NICU. And they have been able to stay closer to home."
"I couldn't imagine being moved up to the city. Because there is so much up there. And here we had our own group of nurses. We always had the same ones that rotated through. So, it was just nice."
Dr. Makkar says his favorite part of this reunion is seeing the kids growing and healthy.
"If I wouldn't have known that these babies were taken care of in our NICU, they are like any other healthy kid. So that's what gives us satisfaction about our work."
Comanche County Memorial Hospital's Level 2 NICU is the only one serving Southwest Oklahoma. The next closest is in Oklahoma City.
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