Mercy Kids Transport Team is ready to fly in Joplin

November 17, 2015

When seconds count, Mercy Joplin now has a neonatal-trained transport team to transfer a critically ill newborn to the hospital for specialized care. 

Mercy NICU Transport Team provides 24 hour neonatal critical care transport services.  The specially trained team of neonatal nurse practitioners, neonatologist, critical care nurses and respiratory therapists deliver patient care while working in specially equipped ambulances and helicopters. The Mercy Kids Transport Team works closely with NICU Neonatologists, and Specialists. 

The transport team’s goal is to bring the NICU to the patient, stabilizing the patient at the referral hospital. By stabilizing the baby before and during transport, Mercy reduces mortality and morbidity in the long run.

“By bringing the intensive care unit to the infant, all the technical innovations that you have at your fingertips in the NICU, you’ll now have when our specialist arrive to pick up your baby,” Mercy Joplin Neonatologist Dr. Deborah Pickens says. “From that point on our team stabilizes, providing the level of care given once we reach our NICU.”

“We transport the babies in special incubators and we’re capable of doing high-frequency ventilation,” says Dr. Pickens. “These babies require very specialized care; our team is trained to perform high-level skills in the ambulance or by air. These skills and 67 years combined experience among our two neonatologist and four neonatal nurse practitioners are critical to the tiny patients relying on us. Now that we offer this in Joplin, it will also help many of our families get the same great NICU care closer to home instead of having to travel many hours. The ability to transport these babies from outlying hospitals to Mercy Joplin by air is unique in our area and we are blessed to offer this to our patients and the families needing specialized care in the region.”

Of course, all of the most advanced equipment and technology necessary to provide high quality, comprehensive neonatal care is in place once we arrive back in Joplin.  Mercy has a dedicated staff including two neonatologists and four neonatal nurse practitioners, skilled nurses, respiratory therapist and sub-specialty therapist who provide 24/7 care to our NICU babies and their families.


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