Woman's Hospital of Texas
September 26, 2018

Emilliano Padilla at home happy and healthy after receiving treatment at The Woman’s Hospital of Texas Level IV NICU for 78 days.

HCA-affiliated The Woman’s Hospital of Texas, which delivers more babies than any other Texas hospital, has been designated as a Level IV Advanced Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) by the Texas Department of State Health Services.

Only 20 Texas hospitals have earned this coveted designation which provides the highest level of acute care for the roughly two percent of premature and critically ill infants born earlier than 32 weeks gestation and weighing less than 1,500 grams. 

“Achieving the Level IV designation is a direct result of the service and care provided by our neonatal team as the state’s premier facility dedicated to the health and well-being of women, newborns and children,” says The Woman’s Hospital of Texas CEO Ashley McClellan.

Level IV care provides life support, advanced imaging including MRI and echocardiography, a full range of respiratory support and other services. The hospital’s highly skilled NICU Transport Team is available 24/7 to help with high-risk transfers within a 150-mile radius.

Angleton residents Melissa and Miguel Padilla witnessed the expertise of the Level IV NICU firsthand when their son, Emilliano, was born prematurely at 27 weeks gestation weighing only 2 pounds, 14 ounces. Diagnosed with hydrocephalus, Emilliano received a life-saving procedure to place a pediatric reservoir at just 15 days old. Reservoirs are used to treat hydrocephalus, an abnormal amount of cerebrospinal fluid that accumulates in the brain, which occurs most commonly in premature infants. 

“It was overwhelming and scary to have a preemie and not know what to expect, but I felt comfortable the way the doctors and nurses explained things and reassured me,” says mom Melissa. “They worked together to take care of my son.”

During his 78 days in the NICU, Melissa and Miguel traveled an hour each way to visit their son. Having a relationship with Emilliano’s primary nurses gave them confidence that he was in good hands when they weren’t able to be there.

“It made it easier for us to come home and leave our heart at the hospital.”

About 380,000 babies, or one in 10, are born prematurely in the United States every year.  In 2017, the preterm birth rate in Texas was 10.4 percent.

“We have an outstanding team of multidisciplinary professionals working together each and every day to obtain the best outcomes for these babies,” adds William Caplan, M.D., medical director of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at The Woman’s Hospital of Texas. “This recognition acknowledges our commitment to provide the highest level of care, resulting in the best possible outcomes.”

About HCA Healthcare’s Gulf Coast Division and The Woman’s Hospital of Texas

HCA Houston Healthcare is part of HCA Healthcare’s Gulf Coast Division, a comprehensive network of hospitals, outpatient surgery centers, emergency centers and diagnostic imaging facilities in greater Houston, Corpus Christi and South Texas. Facilities in the Gulf Coast Division include: 18 hospitals, nine ambulatory care centers, off-campus emergency centers, and a regional transfer center that provides one phone call access and support for patient transfers into and out of the HCA Gulf Coast Division affiliated hospitals as well as access to ground and air transportation within a 150-mile radius. HCA Healthcare’s Gulf Coast Division is the most comprehensive medical provider in the Houston area and part of HCA Healthcare, the nation’s leading provider of quality healthcare services with 179 hospitals in the United States and England.

Since 1976, The Woman’s Hospital of Texas has been the state’s premier facility dedicated to the health and well-being of women, newborns and children. Located near the Texas Medical Center in the heart of Houston, The Woman’s Hospital of Texas offers expertise and outstanding care in breast health, imaging, gynecology, obstetrics, high-risk pregnancy, neonatology, minimally-invasive surgery and pediatric care. For more information, visit online at HCA Gulf Coast or Woman's Hospital.