Those of us who have lived around here for a while have grown accustomed to seeing construction cranes and trailers at the local hospital. As the community has grown steadily, so has Bozeman Deaconess Hospital with almost continuous expansion.
And it hasn’t just been more rooms for patients and office space for health care providers. The growth has come with new technology that enables the hospital to meet a widening array of local health care needs.
The hospital recently added one of its most important expansion of services with the opening of a birth center and neonatal intensive care unit – the firsts of their kind in the immediate region.
The development will mean a world of difference to growing families in the community. Heretofore, when babies were born prematurely or with complications, they and their families had to be sent to more comprehensive health care facilities out of town. And that came with considerable expense and stress at a difficult time for those families.
The new neonatal intensive care unit will be able to care for infants as small as three pounds and born many weeks prematurely. The unit will be staffed by specialized neonatal nurse practitioners and a pediatric pharmacist, dietitian and respiratory specialist. The birth center will include six labor and delivery rooms and rooms for expectant mothers who need care in advance of childbirth.
The new rooms and the technologies that come with them will alleviate the need for birthing parents and their providers to compete with other health care needs for rooms and equipment in the general hospital setting.
Not so long ago it was common for those seeking specialized medical care to travel out of town to larger, more comprehensive medical care facilities for that care. Not so much anymore. In recent years, locals have been able to get increasingly sophisticated medical care locally at lower costs and without the stress of having to travel.
These improvements have been adding steadily to the quality of life available to all who live and work in Southwest Montana. Bozeman Deaconess is commended for continuing to expand services and we should all celebrate their successes.