University of Louisville Magazine

WIN-SPR 2014

The University of Louisville Alumni Magazine: for alumni, faculty, staff, students and anyone that is a UofL Cardinal fan.

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Tamina Singh, MD, is one of the many health care professionals dedicated to their work in the Neonatal Follow Up Program. The pro- gram, which treats and tracks the health of little ones like Lacey O'Neal, another infant benefi ting from the program, is one of only two of its kind in the state. UofL Neonatal Group follows infants through the milestones of early childhood Since June 17, 2011, Chris and Morgan McGarvey have measured their days in tiny increments and monu- mental milestones. That day, their twins were born 14 weeks early. Daughter Clara weighed 1.65 pounds; son Wilson, 1.91. The McGarveys knew that each sip of breast milk, every unassisted breath, each fraction of an ounce gained or lost, was critical, so they relied heavily on the expertise of University of Louisville neonatolo- gists and were active in their children's care. Chris McGarvey said the doctors worked so closely with her that she felt like a pediatric resident. "I can't say enough great things about the UofL neonatal group," she said, as she remembered talking to neonatologist David Adamkin, MD, about steroids for Clara. "When my husband showed him a pediatric journal article about steroid use, Dr. Adamkin said, 'I helped write this one.'" Wilson was discharged from the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Kosair Children's Hospital after 79 days and Clara stayed nearly three weeks longer. Each went home weighing about f ve pounds. Clara and Wilson still needed close monitoring so they continued seeing the UofL neonatologists after discharge. They joined the 1,100 at-risk infants followed by the UofL Neonatal Follow Up Program. This team of neonatal experts cares for high-risk infants across the state and provides the only service of its kind in the western half of Kentucky. The UofL Neonatal Follow Up Program, which was founded in the 1970s, is one of two Intensive Level Evaluation Centers recognized by the state of Kentucky to provide early-intervention evaluations for NICU graduates. It's a not-for-prof t program, supported in part by a grant from the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services Division of Maternal and Child Health. One hundred percent of revenues is returned to the program. "We serve as a bridge between the NICU and the family primary care provider. We focus on the growth and development issues specif c to prematu- rity and other high-risk conditions," explained co- " There is no doubt in my mind the UofL neonatal group is why my children are doing as well as they are. " – Chris McGarvey director and developmental psychologist Elizabeth Schumacher, PhD. "Our goal is to identify issues early, before they become long-term problems." The team includes neonatologists, a pediatric clinical/developmental psychologist, nurse clinicians and pediatric physical, occupational, and speech therapists. Typical visits can last up to two hours, which allows signif cant time to address medical, growth and development concerns related to a long-term NICU stay. Patients also have easy access to other health care services, from physical therapy to apnea monitor management. "We provide families with individualized home programs and, where necessary, evaluate them for intervention services very early in their child's development," Schumacher said. The highest-risk children are followed until school age to be sure they are developing well and receiving needed medical or developmental supports. The McGarvey twins expect to graduate from the Neonatal Follow Up Program this spring. Clara and Wilson are doing very well, even exceeding expecta- tions for children their age, thanks in part to the support they received from the Follow Up team. "Our hope is they'll graduate in April but we'll still go back just to visit," McGarvey said. "There is no doubt in my mind the UofL neonatal group is why my children are doing as well as they are." W I N T E R / S P R I N G U O F L M A G A Z I N E | 3 9 G R O W I N G B E T T E R F U T U R E S UL_39 39 UL_39 39 1/24/14 10:17 AM 1/24/14 10:17 AM

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