Fife Neonatal Unit going from strength to strength

Recently I visited Fife’s Neonatal Services for a tour of the facilities at Victoria Hospital in Kirkcaldy. The service, which relocated to the Victoria Hospital two years ago, looks after over 400 babies a year on average, and which has in that time included 8 sets of triplets.

I was delighted to be invited by the staff, particularly Jeana Arnott, at the Neonatal Service for a tour around their facilities and I want to thank them for the opportunity to see first-hand the department in action.

The work that the staff undertakes is a credit to the NHS in Fife and they should be proud of all that they have achieved as the service continues to go from strength to strength. Since the move to the new department at the Victoria there has been changes which aim to improve the service and these have been positively received by both the staff and patients.

Since the move the department has also seen developments in its services to enhance the care and experience for the baby and family. This has included, with help from a donation by the Mary Leishman Foundation, the introduction of Therapeutic Hypothermia which reduces the risk of brain damage in babies who suffer a lack of oxygen prior to delivery. The department has also seen the introduction of a Neonatal Community Liaison Nurse to help patients taking their babies home and a Neonatal Clinical Educator to support new and existing staff.

The unit has recently engaged with NHS Fife’s eHealth department and the Digital Health Institute in Edinburgh to develop a remote video access that will allow parents to view their babies when they can’t be together. It is hoped the initiative will lead to parents being able to view their baby in the unit from their home.

It was a pleasure to speak to parents in the ward who only had positives stories to tell and I am pleased to see the neonatal unit is striving to go that extra step to ensure parents and their babies are provided the upmost care. The staff work exceptionally hard and they rightly deserve credit for the care and support that they give.