Five weeks early and on April 23, 2021, Cameron Alexander Bell came into the world, after being delivered by C-Section at UnityPoint Health – Finley Hospital.
Due to being born early, jaundice, tachypnea and not controlling his body temperature, Cameron was admitted to Finley’s Level II Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) and stayed there for 14 days.
Juvona Camel, Cameron’s mom, was thankful to have the high-level NICU care her baby needed right here in Dubuque.
“It was really good,” Juvona said. “It was a big stress reliever to know that he was within the medical realm of being treated here versus having to go to Cedar Rapids or Iowa City. He was able to have that managed care here.”
Throughout her baby’s extended stay at Finley Hospital, Juvona found close connections with many staff members in the Family Birthing Suites, who continued to care for her and her baby.
“They are all really wonderful,” Juvona said. “After being here for like two weeks, we really got to know a lot of the people on the unit. I felt really comfortable with him being cared for by everyone. There was no shortage of love and attention that was given to him. I could tell they really cared about him and even connected with him.”
As part of being cared for in Finley’s NICU, Juvona and Cameron’s dad, Craig Bell, were part of Care Conferences with our neonatal nurse practitioners, Family Birthing Suites manager and members of the nursing staff.
The Care Conferences were a chance for the parents to hear updates on Cameron’s progress from members of his care team, as well as asking questions – a welcomed opportunity by Juvona.
“It was nice to be informed and feeling like I was part of the team,” Juvona said. “I was there while they were discussing things with Cameron’s care, and I could ask questions. It was really like being in the midst of the situation.”
As a mom of twins already, Juvona noticed a difference in the care she received during the two birthing experiences.
The care her baby and herself received at Finley Hospital stood out most.
“I have twins, and they were born at 34 weeks,” Juvona said. “In comparison to the care and treatment that the twins received, it was totally different from what Cameron received. This is a more personal, hands on and loving atmosphere with such caring staff. With the twins, there was none of that. It was a cold hospital setting. Here, we are in the middle of COVID, and it really felt so familial.”
Throughout Cameron’s journey in the NICU, he achieved many milestones like getting his weight up to five pounds, after being born at 4 pounds, 15 ounces.
It’s a milestone that Juvona and the Family Birthing Suites staff were excited to see.
“When he made 5 pounds, it was really exciting for all of us involved in his care,” Juvona said. “We were able to see that he was gaining weight and growing."
Now that Cameron is at home, Juvona and their family are looking forward to getting to spend time with each other, especially the siblings.
Juvona won’t soon forget the excellent experience she recently had at Finley Hospital and the NICU.
“Finley is the best place to deliver,” Juvona said. “You get really caring and informative staff. You feel like you and your baby are being cared for by extended family. There wasn’t ever one situation where I felt like I shouldn’t have had him at Finley. It was just a really awesome experience.”