SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) - Several nurses at CHRISTUS Health Shreveport-Bossier have a greater responsibility when a baby is born in need in a different town. They are part of the perinatal transport team that goes out and picks up babies with immediate medical needs and bring them back for care at CHRISTUS' NICU.
Dana Baca has been working inside the NICU at CHRISTUS for nearly 20 years. She's been on the transport team for 16 of those years.
"You get attached to these babies," said Baca, about her time as a NICU nurse. "Especially with the mom's because you have that bond that you know you're a mother. And they rely on us a lot while they're here."
Baca said she wouldn't trade her job for anything even though it makes her sick.
"I actually get motion sick. That's common for most of us transport nurses that we do get sick but we don't give it up because we love what we do."
The NICU at CHRISTUS is considered a high-risk neonatal referral center for North Louisiana and East Texas. Many hospitals across the region call on the hospitals staff when they know a baby will be born prematurely or will have specific needs.
"We've gone anywhere from Nacogdoches, Texas to Natchitoches, Louisiana. We also go to Texarkana and we go to Minden and we've also gone to Marshall so we've gone all around."
Baca and her staff use a transport machine, a mobile NICU unit, to monitor the babies that are transported to the hospital. The crew benefits from special equipment that was funded by Children's Miracle Network Hospitals.
"Without them a lot of the stuff that we have to help take care of these babies wouldn't be here."
CMN is currently working to fund a special practice baby doll that nurses can use to learn different life-saving techniques.
Sponsored by CHRISTUS Health Shreveport-Bossier, Your Children's Miracle Network Hospital.