Caring for little stars

11 December 2014

Natalie and Edis Kazim, with baby LeylaIn October we met Hina Parmar and her baby Maya, along with parents Natalie and Edis Kazim and their baby Leyla. Both children were patients in Starlight, our special care baby unit at BH, and we wanted to find out more about the care they received.

The Starlight unit is unique in that it has the UK’s first care rooms designed specifically to allow newborn babies to receive care and treatment in a private, family-centred setting. The rooms, which are known as individualised care rooms, have space for parents to stay with their newborns 24 hours a day, allowing them to play a central role in the care of their child. We asked Hina Parmar, whose daughter Maya was born at only 25 weeks, about her experiences of the new rooms at Starlight.

“I suffered from severe pre-eclampsia at 25 weeks and Maya was only 460g when she was born,” explained Hina. Having spent two months in intensive care at UCLH, Hina and Maya were transferred to Barnet Hospital in August. Maya spent some time on the ward before being moved to an individualised care room where Hina is able to stay with her 24 hours a day, with nursing staff present at all times.

“Before we were able to move into our own room I used to come in to the hospital in the morning to be with Maya, before having to go home in the evening,” said Hina. “Now I can stay with Maya all the time and do everything for her, with the added bonus that there is the support of nurses available if I should need them.”

When we met mother and daughter, Maya was four months old and they were finally due to go home together in the coming days.

“The nurses are fantastic, I wouldn’t have got through this without them” she reflected. “It’s a fantastic unit and I think more hospitals should adopt this set-up”.

Natalie and Edis Kazim were also staying in the unit, with seven-day-old Leyla who needed some help with her breathing. Natalie described how she had also found the support in the unit invaluable.

“The staff are with you 24/7 and are really helpful. As first time parents that gives you the peace of mind that everything is going to be ok,” she said. “They’ve also given us lots of little tricks and advice on things like winding!”

Image: Natalie and Edis Kazim, with baby Leyla.