Areas to Support
The number of births at Meriter has increased substantially over last year. More than 3,900 births were recorded in 2014! That's nearly a 7% increase over 2013, which saw 3,683 births.
With the generous support of donors like you, Meriter-UnityPoint Health continues to enhance and expand care for women and infants in our community. More families choose Meriter for their birth experience than any other hospital in south central Wisconsin. Combining the best in medical care, technology and clinical research, we are equipped to care for a variety of complications that an expectant mother or newborn may encounter.
The full range of patient care begins in the Center for Perinatal Care, where a multidisciplinary-team approach provides for a full range of complex medical conditions that affect the mother and fetus. The Birthing Center is an advanced tertiary care center for maternal and newborn patients, and the Newborn Intensive Care Unit is equipped to care for high-risk and critically ill infants. We work closely with our colleagues in obstetrics, maternal-fetal medicine, and neonatology from the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, bringing together the best in perinatal care, technology and clinical research with all the benefits of care in a community hospital.
Center for Perinatal Care
The Center for Perinatal Care opened in January 2014, and is a collaborative UW School of Medicine and Public Health and Meriter Hospital program that treats a full range of complex medical, obstetric, fetal and genetic conditions that complicate pregnancy, birth and infant care.
- High-Risk Perinatal Care - care plans for high-risk pregnancies.
- Diabetes in Pregnancy Program - diabetes education and management before, during and after pregnancy.
- Prenatal Diagnostic Center - advanced fetal ultrasounds, screening and diagnostic testing, and fetal care coordination.
- Genetic Counseling - guided discussions about testing options and potential risks.
- Perinatal Palliative Care - care and compassion during the difficult times of pregnancy and infant loss.
Birthing Center and Newborn Intensive Care
Meriter’s ability to care for this substantial increase in patient volume can be attributed to earlier renovations completed during the Birthing Center remodel. However, the need to accommodate the increase in high-risk mothers and infants has created additional challenges.
In 2013, Newborn Intensive Care Unit (NICU) staff cared for 581 critically ill infants, including 77 sets of twins and 3 sets of triplets. Our NICU is routinely filled to capacity. We are working to create flexible use space for monitoring high-risk mothers before they deliver to help free up space in the labor and delivery rooms. This requires investments in additional maternal and fetal monitors.
A new Infant Nutrition Lab will be created for the NICU next year. The lab will formulate and maintain a mixture of mother’s breast milk, donated breast milk and infant formula to ensure optimal nutrients are available to every infant. Optimal nutrition promotes neurodevelopment and reduces infections and intestinal complications in premature infants.
There are equipment needs to enhance care like a Sonosite, which is a hand-held ultrasound imaging tool to assist physicians; an Omnibed and shuttle system that protects fragile infants by limiting the number of times they need to be transferred for procedures or surgery; and phototherapy equipment to treat infant jaundice.
As a community hospital, Meriter has cared for generations of mothers and infants. We work hard to anticipate and meet the changing needs of our patients. A gift today will make a difference for expectant mothers facing the uncertainity of a high-risk pregnancy and help us offer the highest level of care to the thousands of mothers and babies who depend on Meriter every year.