Sanford announces new NICU expansion

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BISMARCK, N.D. - Parents hope their child never ends up in the neonatal intensive care unit, but if they do, comfort for the family can be hard to find.

Sanford Health announced Tuesday it will be expanding its NICU to include 18 private rooms. Sanford says the private rooms will put the babies in a calmer environment with parents, which can help newborns develop.

Mark and Claudia Thompson got involved with the project after their granddaughter was in a NICU in Minneapolis for nearly four months.

“She's absolutely normal. She just made her first semester honor list at a middle school in Fargo and we're very blessed,” said Mark Thompson.

The expansion will be built in the summer of 2019. According to a news release sent Tuesday, the new NICU will be located on the sixth floor of the Sanford Medical Center in Bismarck, currently the inpatient rehabilitation unit.

Inpatient rehabilitation will no longer be available at the Bismarck Medical Center but patients can continue to be served within Sanford Health.