Neonatal Intensive Care Nursing at RWJBarnabas Health

nurse holding a newborn babyInfants born with problems requiring intensive care, ranging from prematurity, birth defects, infection and cardiac malformations, are the tiniest and most fragile patients a nurse ever encounters. Each year, RWJBarnabas Health cares for more than 3,500 such infants who require specialized nursing skills in our eight Neonatal Intensive Care Units (NICUs) across New Jersey.

Our NICU nurses grasp the complex and challenging nature of caring for these tiny babies, some born as early as 22 weeks gestation, along with the extraordinary stress for parents who entrust their care to our NICU teams.

Our nurses have unmatched expertise and provide emotional empathy and stability to delicate newborns and their parents. While NICU nursing can bring both tears of joy and tears of sadness, our NICU nurses are tenacious, delivering the highest quality family-centered care to help newborns recover, grow and thrive.

Who are RWJBarnabas Health NICU Nurses?

At RWJBarnabas Health we are proud to have a diverse team of NICU nurses who are highly skilled, detail oriented, nurturing and compassionate. In the fast-paced environment of the NICU, our nurses are assessing patients around the clock, making clinical decisions and noting the tiniest changes in vital signs. NICU nurses are critical thinkers and steadfast in devoting themselves emotionally, cognitively and physically to the care of critically ill infants.

NICU nurses attend to the day-to-day needs of infants and their families including:

  • Explaining complex situations and terminology to parents
  • Performing certain procedures on newborns as directed by physicians
  • Overseeing high tech care for acutely ill infants
  • Providing supportive care for mildly ill newborns or those on the road to recovery
  • Arranging for a NICU-specific certified lactation consultant to assist new mothers with breastfeeding
  • Managing infants on ventilators
  • Delivering numerous intravenous (IV) medications
  • Attending the delivery of a premature infant

While NICU babies may be small, the act of caring for them is immense. NICU nurses work collaboratively with fellow nurses, physicians, respiratory therapists, social workers, and most importantly, parents, to restore health and help babies to lead their best lives.

Our NICU nurses:

  • Are highly skilled and certified in neonatal resuscitation (Neonatal Resuscitation Program: NRP) and the management of all infant-related disease processes
  • Have strong working relationships with their NICU team and with all other disciplines
  • Communicate with parents and help them bond with their newborns, encouraging them to touch, hold, feed and care for their babies
  • Know their patients and react appropriately to their changing medical conditions
  • Guide parents through a newborn’s stay in the NICU, communicating and educating them about their baby’s progress

Our core philosophy is family-centered care. During a stressful time of being in the NICU, our nurses are supporting parents and families through a traumatic experience while providing the best care to newborns with critical and unique health challenges.

On the Front Line for the Tiniest Patients

In our three Level II and five Level III/IV NICUs, critically ill newborns receive the most advanced, multidisciplinary, comprehensive care from New Jersey’s leading experts. Outcomes across RWJBarnabas Health consistently exceed regional and national benchmarks for excellence.

Our state-of-the-art facilities are equipped with the latest in medical technology appropriate for newborns. NICU nurses monitor vital signs and administer medications for the most seriously ill or premature infants day and night, ensuring that they are breathing and developing properly.

In our Level III/IV NICUs, our nurses are skilled in the highly complex care of micro-preemies who may need ventilators or feeding tubes.

At Bristol-Myers Squibb Hospital at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital and Children’s Hospital of NJ at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center, our nurses are have additional expertise in extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO), needed by the sickest infants in order to survive.

Pediatric transport services, staffed by a team of specialty doctors and nurses, are available 24/7 to transfer the sickest, most medically fragile patients to our Level III/IV NICUs from other medical facilities.

The NICU can be an intimidating place for new parents but our nurses are empathetic and reassuring. Parents are the most important members of a baby’s care team and it is the role of the NICU nurse to involve them and help them bond with their newborns in creative ways.

Soft lighting, a warm environment and soothing sounds help infants transition from womb to incubator.

Skin to skin contact is encouraged, helping both babies and parents build an attachment.

When parents are unable to be present, nurses can facilitate video access in real time.

What Is the Culture of NICU Nursing at RWJBarnabas Health?

Our NICU nurses are committed to education and RWJBarnabas Health supports our ongoing journey to learn and grow professionally. The Center for Professional Development, Innovation and Research offers continuing education opportunities year-round with innovative programs that advance skills and help cultivate new nurse leaders. Many of our facilities have earned Magnet recognition from the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), acknowledging that RWJBarnabas Health truly values nursing talent and a commitment to excellence.

We offer:

  • Training in critical care nursing
  • Orientation programs that teach about neonatal care and how to care for sick infants
  • A new graduate registered nurse (RN) residency program
  • Neonatal Resuscitation Program (NRP) Training
  • Mentorship and leadership opportunities
  • Opportunities to participate in performance improvement, nursing research and hospital wide committees

Why Consider NICU Nursing at RWJBarnabas Health?

As NICU nurses at RWJBarnabas Health we take pride in our profession and work hard to provide newborns and families with the highest level of care. We are a committed team of individuals with vast talent and expertise who promote an environment of diversity and inclusion. We love what we do. We are critical thinkers and excellent communicators.

We know that a newborn’s hospitalization profoundly affects families, and this is where NICU nurses can make a real difference. RWJBarnabas Health NICUs provide a professional environment where skill, heart, career satisfaction and growth come together to offer the very best for the NICU nurse. RWJBarnabas Health is the place to go in NJ for the best environment in NICU nursing.

RWJBarnabas Health offers an unsurpassed commitment to the highest standards of family-centered care and to the provision of top-quality neonatal intensive care services at our facilities throughout New Jersey. As NICU nurses:

  • We are critical thinkers working in a fast-paced and demanding environment
  • We know our patients and are nurturing and attentive to their ever-changing needs
  • We are patient, strong and upbeat

We are RWJBarnabas Health NICU Nurses. Come join us and be a part of our team!

How Is RWJBarnabas Health Committed to Excellence?

RWJBarnabas Health and Rutgers University work in partnership to offer a world-class academic health system dedicated to life-changing research, clinical training of tomorrow’s health care workforce and high-quality patient care. Through collaborative partnerships between leaders in health care and higher education we enhance research, professional education for medical and health professionals, improve access to care and reduce health disparities in New Jersey. Our health care ystem has dedicated adult, pediatric and behavioral health emergency care, Rapid Diagnostic and Observation Units and provides all medical and surgical specialties.

Let’s Shape the Future of Nursing Together

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