It was less than a month before Christmas, 2020 and Kailey Roney’s second pregnancy was going smoothly. However, when baby Nolan decided to arrive 12 weeks early, everything changed. Fortunately, Nolan had the world-class medical team at our neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), at the Rawlco Centre for Mother Baby Care, at Regina’s General Hospital (RGH) in his corner.
“I started experiencing what I thought were just light contractions on November 24,” says Kailey. “Two days later, we were delivering Nolan by C-section at RGH. He was whisked away to the NICU immediately, but my husband Eric assured me the baby was fine, despite being so small and fragile.”
Nolan weighed only three pounds at birth. His tiny lungs initially required the help of a ventilator to help him breath, and then a CPAP machine, a non-invastive means to deliver constant air pressure into his nose. This helped to keep the air sacs in his lungs open to prevent apnea (a condition where the baby stops breathing). Fortunately, that was the only medical complication the tiny infant experienced as he gradually grew stronger under the watchful eyes of the NICU medical team. Once he was able to breathe without assistance, it was only a matter of time until Nolan could go home to meet his older sister Evelynne. His stay in our NICU, at 87 days, lasted almost three months.
“The staff in the NICU are truly amazing,” Kailey marvels. “I honestly don’t know if Nolan would be here without them. We’re also grateful to Hospital of Regina Foundation supporters for ensuring the NICU is equipped with the latest technology and equipment, in order to save the lives of babies like mine.”
Coincidentally, Kailey also started her life as a NICU baby, spending her first two weeks at RGH. So, she certainly has a unique perspective, and deep appreciation, for the life-saving work that happens there every day.
“As someone who started out in the NICU, and now as a parent of a NICU baby, it’s comforting to know that we have incredible medical care like that in Regina,” Kailey says. “We’re very lucky to have a resource like that, right here at home.”
Today, Nolan is thriving at home in Regina with his parents and doting big sister. Other than a touch of croup recently, he’s a healthy, happy 13-pound baby.
“It’s wonderful to see Nolan’s story turn out so well,” says Dino Sophocleous, president and CEO Hospitals of Regina Foundation. “Each year, Regina’s NICU sees about 500 babies who require round-the-clock, high tech care. As a Foundation, we firmly believe that the best health care is local. We are committed to ensuring our medical teams have the best possible technology, to give babies like Nolan the help they need, when they need it most, right here at home.”