The Division of Neonatology is responsible for the operations of the Regional Newborn Intensive Care Unit (RNICU) at University Hospital and the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Children's of Alabama and provides coverage for four community hospitals in Birmingham.

Regional Neonatal Intensive Care Unit & Continuing Care Nursery at UAB

The Regional Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (RNICU) at the UAB Women & Infants Center provides the best possible care for babies born too soon or who are ill. Together with Children's of Alabama, UAB offers the only Level IV NICU in Alabama – designated by the American Academy of Pediatrics as the highest and most comprehensive level of care available.

The center also is home to a Continuing Care Nursery (CCN), providing extended step-down care for preterm and term babies with medical conditions. The 120-bed Level IV NICU/CCN was built around the needs of newborns and their families, and it's well-equipped to handle any situation that may arise.

UAB’s Pediatric Neonatology specialists oversee clinical operations in the NICU and provide comprehensive care for babies using the most comprehensive and up-to-date techniques. Neonatology services closely align with UAB’s Maternal-Fetal Medicine services as necessary to provide a team approach to care when pregnancies are high risk, or become high risk, in order to ensure the best possible outcomes. Should your baby require additional specialty care, you will find comfort in knowing that, as a university medical center, UAB’s Pediatric Department includes top pediatric cardiologists, surgeons, neurologists, nephrologists and all other pediatric specialties who are readily available to provide care.

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Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Children's of Alabama

The NICU at Children's of Alabama is a Level IV unit with 48 private rooms available for neonates and infants. Our unit houses four ECMO (extracorporeal membrane oxygenation) rooms, and it is the only unit in the state that provides dialysis for premature infants. 

Patients are referred from other hospitals primarily for surgical and subspecialty care.

Neonatologists and neonatal nurse practitioners are in house to provide 24-7 care.

The Children’s of Alabama NICU is part of the following collaboratives:

  • Children’s Hospital Neonatal Consortium

  • Vermont Oxford Network

  • Neonatal Research Network

The Children’s of Alabama NICU is involved in many Quality Improvement (QI) projects, both as an individual unit and through our involvement with other leading Children’s hospitals in the US and Canada.  

  • STEPP-IN: Safe Transitions & Euthermia in the Peri-operative Period in neonates & infants

  • ERASE Post-Op Pain: reduce unrelieved postoperative pain

  • Code Debriefing in the NICU

  • Baby NINJA: Nephrotoxic Injury Negated by Just in Time Action, reduction of nephrotoxic-induced acute kidney injury (AKI) in neonates & infants

  • BRAIN Program aka Neuro-NICU: Brain Rescue and Avoidance of Injury in Neonates

  • Decreasing Unintended Extubations in the NICU

  • CLABSI Reduction in collaboration with Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center (CCHMC)

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Community NICUs

In addition to the NICUs at the UAB medical center (UAB and Children's of Alabama), four community Level III NICUs (Grandview Hospital, Baptist Shelby Hospital, Baptist Princeton Hospital, and St Vincent Hospital) are covered daily by 5-7 neonatologists. The average daily census is around 50 NICU patients and about 35-45 well babies. Each NICU has a medical director who reports to the medical director of the Section on Community Neonatology.

Clinical Programs

The Division of Neonatology is involved in multiple clinical programs and quality improvement programs to help provide the best possible care for their patients. Click the link to learn more about these programs. 

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Communication/MIST

There is a dedicated service (1-800-UAB-MIST) for referrals 24 hours a day. The neonatology calls are answered immediately by a designated neonatologist who can admit the referred patient to any one of our 6 NICUs depending on patient needs.

Clinical Teaching

Teaching is conducted daily in teaching rounds (residents, fellows, NNPs) with additional lectures to cover the educational curriculum every month. Lectures are also provided to the local pediatricians and family physicians.