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Brave Nurses Drove To Hurricane-Hit Louisiana To Save Newborns in NICU | "Our Job Is To Love & Support Babies & Families"

Brave Nurses Drove To Hurricane-Hit Louisiana To Save Newborns in NICU | "Our Job Is To Love & Support Babies & Families"

The category 4 hurricane Laura battered parts of Louisiana, where at least 10 people have died, and Texas.

There are some individuals who make us wonder if there are angels on earth. Their kindness and bravery are exemplary and make us believe in humanity all over again. 

Hurricane Laura, a Category 4 storm, has battered parts of Louisiana. Southwest Louisiana’s water and power systems took a big hit on August 28 and that prompted hospitals to evacuate patients as it can take weeks for the water system to be back up. The aftermath of the hurricane was so large that residents who stayed during the storms were forced to seek new shelter elsewhere, according to the Advocate

This difficult time prompted other members of the healthcare community to come forward to help. A group of nurses from a Texas hospital drove to Louisiana after the storm to rescue babies in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) of a Louisiana hospital hit by Hurricane Laura. CHRISTUS Ochsner Lake Area Hospital in Lake Charles, Louisiana, took a big hit by more than 100 mph winds while they had four babies in its NICU, according to Good Morning America (GMA). They had to evacuate all of the patients there. 



 

 

NICU nurses from CHRISTUS Southeast Texas St. Elizabeth, Beaumont, Texas were the ones who made the journey crossing state lines to be able to transfer the babies to their hospital. They were equipped with necessary high-tech equipment for the little babies. Nurses, respiratory therapists, and a neonatal nurse practitioner drove from Beaumont to Lake Charles for the critical transfer. 

"Knowing that it's been us in that same position many times before, there was no question about whether or not to help," Paul Trevino, president and CEO of CHRISTUS Southeast Texas Health System, said in a statement. "After the storm passed, we immediately began working with leaders at our system office and Louisiana hospitals to understand their needs and enacted plans to safely move a handful of special needs patients from their hospital to ours."



 

They made the three-hour journey without any incidence and the NICU babies are now at St. Elizabeth. "A NICU stay is not usually something parents expect to face while they are anticipating the arrival of their newborn," said Kelli Huebel, registered nurse and NICU transport coordinator at St. Elizabeth. "So, a stay in the NICU combined with needing to transport their baby from one state to another is especially stressful," she added. She brought focus on to the noble profession by saying, "Our job is to love, support and care for these babies and their families." 



 

14 people were confirmed to have died after the hurricane made landfall. 10 of the victims were in Louisiana and four in Texas. Winds of up to 150mph caused devastating damage and power cuts to more than half a million homes. It also led to a chemical fire from an industrial plant, as per BBC. "Hurricane Laura is the fifth strongest storm to make landfall in the United States in recorded history and the first in memory to maintain major hurricane strength as it traveled through Louisiana, bringing catastrophic destruction to many parishes," Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards said in a statement. He also asked for urgent financial assistance from the federal government. 



 

Before and after images obtained by CNN show the immense damage to the Lake Charles area where many buildings appeared to not have any roofs. Debris was strewn around everywhere on either side of Gauthier Road. Most of western Louisiana is also facing power outage. Flood water also partly submerged many parts of the state and the water is still present. 

References:

https://www.theadvocate.com/baton_rouge/news/weather_traffic/article_a5a94530-e956-11ea-9ca8-2744763b8b9f.html

https://www.goodmorningamerica.com/wellness/story/nurses-rescue-babies-nicu-hurricane-laura-battered-lake-72679658

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-53955186

https://edition.cnn.com/2020/08/28/us/satellite-images-hurricane-laura-before-after-trnd/index.html