Neonatal Intensive Care Unit | Fargo, ND | Sanford Health Skip To Content
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Neonatal Intensive Care Unit

Parents know their own children best. But if an infant becomes seriously ill or injured, families can trust the team at Sanford Children's Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) to know best.

For families, it's a place of care, hope and healing.

For our board-certified physicians, neonatal nurse practitioners, physician assistants and nursing experts, it's a place of technology, research and compassion.

Sanford Children's NICU in Fargo offers unique, advanced healing environments designed to provide critically ill or premature babies with the latest in medical, physical and emotional care. Our leading neonatologists, neonatal nurse practitioners, nurses and support staff provide expert care and are available 24/7. In fact, we care for more than 400 infants per year and our team is rated within the top 25 percent in the United States.

As the region's most comprehensive NICU, parents are given an active role in infant care. We offer a variety of services designed to support families during their stay. And when an infant or expectant mother needs to be transported to our care, Sanford transport teams are available around the clock.

Sanford Children's NICU offers an advanced level of equipment and capabilities not found at every NICU, including:

  • Synchronized intermittent mandatory ventilation
  • Sophisticated pulmonary functioning testing
  • High frequency oscillatory ventilation
  • High frequency jet ventilation
  • Nitric oxide therapy
  • Cool Cap system

Advanced Environmental Design for Better Outcomes

Originally opened in 1970, we remodeled our NICU to align with current studies that show that sick babies heal faster and have better outcomes when parents are more directly involved in their care in an environment with lower lighting and diminished sound. We offer 33 beds in a unique pod-shaped room design that allows infants and families to remain closer together. There are special pods for twins and multiples, too. The pod-shaped design provides more privacy for families and individual space for caregivers to focus on your baby. We can monitor your baby's vitals from anywhere in the NICU assuring you that we can see how your baby is doing without interrupting you or your baby's healing rest.

Studies show that lower light and sound environments demonstrate longer and higher quality sleep, decreased stress responses, greater psychological stability, better feeding rhythms, quality of movement and increased average daily weight gain. Our NICU complies with these standards and provides one of the best environments in the nation for critically ill newborns.

Family-Centered Care is Important for Your Baby

We recognize the important role that family plays in a baby's health and healing. That's why in our NICU, our team encourages mothers, fathers and other family members to participate in their baby's care.

Studies show that family-focused care results in shorter hospital stays and better long-term outcomes. We encourage parents to participate in their baby's care, at every stage. This is one reason why visiting hours do not apply to parents; we consider them a part of our care team. Parents are allowed to stay with their baby as long as they want and may come and go as they please.

Kangaroo Care (parents hold the baby skin-to-skin) is encouraged when your baby is well enough to tolerate it. This type of care develops a bond between baby and parent and promotes healing. It is an excellent way to get parents involved with direct care.

Regional Center of Care and Referral

Sanford Children's Hospital NICU offers advanced services not often found at other hospitals and we are proud to partner with these hospitals and referring physicians to ensure high quality medical care across the region. Thirty to forty percent of babies admitted to our NICU are transferred from other regional hospitals.