Children’s Miracle Network helps fund critical care for infants in Rapid City

RAPID CITY, S.D. — For 30 years the Children’s Miracle Network (CMN) has been partnering with Rapid City Regional Hospital to care for babies in the Newborn Intensive Care Unit (NICU).

The U.S. has one of the highest infant mortality rates among developed countries — and South Dakota has a significantly higher rate than most other states. In 2017 South Dakota had 94 reported infant deaths, with an infant mortality rate of 7.7 per every 1000 live births. While that may not seem like a large number, the only other states that had a higher rate were Arkansas and Mississipi.

Leading causes include short gestations, low birth weights and congenital anomalies. The NICU unit at Rapid City Regional cares for approximately 350 babies a year. Through partial funding from the Children’s Miracle Network, it’s able to treat most neonatal medical problems.

Millions of children receive care from hospitals like Rapid City Regional, but insurance programs and Medicaid don’t fully cover the costs. CMN helps fund those gaps, often through local fundraisers like the annual Radiothon, which is coming up on Friday, May 10. Funds that are raised locally remain in the Black Hills area to support families in the region.

CMN has helped provide Regional Health’s NICU unit with specialized medical equipment, making it one of the best facilities in the region. Without the support of CMN, many families and their newborns would need to travel out of the area to receive the care they need.

NICU Baby and Mother

NICU Baby and Mother

According to Nanette Fitzgerald, the nursing manager of NICU at Regional Health, “All of my career in the NICU we’ve always depended on CMN to help us buy the equipment that we need for our babies, that we can provide the best quality care that we can. So we are so grateful to CMN. We’ve talked to other nurses that have come from other hospitals and they can’t believe how great our equipment is and how lucky we are, and we just tell them it’s all because of Children’s Miracle Network.”

NewsCenter1 will be covering the 2019 Children’s Miracle Network Radiothon on Friday, and will bring live updates of the event throughout the day. You can make a donation to the Radiothon here.



Categories: Children’s Miracle Network, Local News, South Dakota News