House unanimously adopts Sainato’s ‘NICU Awareness Day’ resolution

Honors families with newborns in neonatal intensive care, recognizes staff

HARRISBURG, Oct. 24 – Supporting and honoring families with children in neonatal intensive care units and recognizing the difference NICU staff make in these families’ lives are the aims of a resolution the House adopted unanimously yesterday, according to the author, state Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence.

Sainato said he introduced H.R. 504 – designating Sept. 30, 2019, as “NICU Awareness Day” in Pennsylvania – to highlight how a newborn’s NICU stay can profoundly affect a family’s life and to shed light on the lifesaving work and support provided by NICU staff.

“Each year, about half a million newborns are admitted to neonatal intensive care units in the United States,” Sainato said. “Although some newborns are there for just a few days, very young preemies or newborns with serious medical conditions may be there for months. For parents of these infants, the NICU can become like a second home, and the incredibly dedicated men and women on staff can help parents get through what could otherwise be an overwhelming experience. 

“Thanks to these front-line professionals, together with advances in neonatal medicine, more and more newborns are achieving successful outcomes. Even so, ongoing research is essential to understand the different medical reasons for NICU stays and the ways to best support families with children who are patients there.

“It’s my hope that ‘NICU Awareness Day’ will serve as a chance for families to share stories of hope, an opportunity to honor the lasting contributions made by NICU professionals, and a reminder of the need for ongoing research and support in this incredibly important field.”