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The neonatal intensive care unit provides critical care to newborns who are ill or premature. Many factors may lead to a newborn being admitted to the NICU, including low birth weight or complications during delivery. The NICU staff works closely with parents to develop a treatment plan for their newborn.


Neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) in Panama City, Florida

At Bay County's only Level III NICU, HCA Florida Gulf Coast Hospital's neonatal team is uniquely qualified to care for premature and critically ill newborns.

Should your baby need to be cared for in the NICU, our staff is prepared 24/7. We work seamlessly with our hospital's labor and delivery team to provide your baby with the best care possible.

Our Level III NICU

Our specialists work together and with you to ensure we provide just the right type of care for your baby.

Family-centered neonatal care

Every neonatal doctor and nurse on our NICU team understands the special care and attention babies require. We also understand the unique concerns a NICU stay may create for families. That's why our team is committed to answering your family's questions and ensuring you understand and feel comfortable with your little one's care plan.

Breastfeeding support

Should you wish to breastfeed, we want to help ensure your breastfeeding experience is a successful and rewarding one even if your baby is in the NICU.

We have a certified lactation consultant available to provide breastfeeding guidance and support. Additionally, storage areas and supplies for breast milk are available while your infant remains in the NICU.

Visiting the NICU

Parents may visit their baby in the NICU any time.

You will be asked to give the ID number found on your hospital ID band before any information about your baby can be released over the phone. Information is only given to parents. We ask that parents share that information as they like with their family and friends. Visitors are limited to two at the bedside at any time.

When visiting, please remain at your baby’s bedside. To protect everyone’s right to privacy, we ask that you do not ask about other patients or look at their records.

Preventing infection in the NICU

Babies in the NICU are very susceptible to infections. Infections can delay recovery and may have long-lasting effects.

To help protect against infections, we have developed the following guidelines:

  • Please limit the number of visitors to two banded persons at a time.
  • When entering the NICU, perform a two-minute hand scrub. Always wash your hands thoroughly before and after holding or touching your baby. The nurses will instruct you on how to do a two-minute scrub.
  • Please notify your baby’s nurse before visiting if you have any signs of illness, especially if you have been exposed to a contagious disease or have a cold sore. We ask you that you do not visit if you have an unexplained fever over 100 degrees F.

Checking on your baby in the NICU

If you are unable to visit the hospital and would like to check on your baby’s condition, please call your baby’s nurse for a progress report at (850) 767-2200. It may be best to not call during nursing shift changes, which occur at 6:30am and 6:30pm.

Feel free to speak to your baby’s doctor, NICU nurses or other members of the support team. They can help you with any questions or concerns you may have.

Taking your baby home

Our NICU staff will work with you to plan ahead for discharge. This will help ease the transition from the hospital to your home. If you have any comments, positive or negative, please share them with our staff, charge nurse or nurse manager.

We are committed to working with you to make sure your baby receives comprehensive care. Should your baby need additional care as they grow and develop, our hospital provides a full-service pediatrics program.

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