NICU (Neonatology)

Having a baby in need of serious medical attention is a difficult situation for families. Parents can rest assured Regional Health Rapid City Hospital is able to provide quality care for even the smallest of patients and ensure that they receive the necessary medical treatment. Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) cares for approximately 350 babies a year. We are supported in part by the Children's Miracle Network (CMN).


Highly specialized care for newborns is provided in our Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). Our NICU is a Level III NICU care facility and treats most neonatal medical problems. Our 28-bed Neonatal Intensive Care Unit is the only one of its kind in Western South Dakota. Every year we care for approximately 350 newborns. Most Newborns admitted to our NICU are born right here at Regional Health Rapid City Hospital. However, many newborns are transferred to us annually by our Neonatal Transport team.


Many women with high-risk pregnancies are referred to Regional Health Rapid City Hospital to consult with obstetricians and neonatologists. If they are able to be delivered at Regional Health Rapid City Hospital, they can be immediately evaluated in the NICU. Critically ill newborns from other hospitals are frequently transferred to Regional Health Rapid City Hospital.


The Neonatal Transport Team consists of registered nurses and neonatal nurse practitioners specially trained in the stabilization, management and transport of ill and premature newborns by ambulance or airplane. The transport team is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to transport your baby to the NICU at Regional Health Rapid City Hospital. In the instance your baby needs care unable to be provided by Regional Health Rapid City Hospital, the transport team will safely deliver your baby to a hospital able to provide the specialized care required by your infant.


The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit is responsible for the care of premature and critically ill infants born at Regional Health Rapid City Hospital and at community hospitals throughout the western South Dakota, eastern Wyoming, eastern Montana and northwest Nebraska region.  

We are able to provide:

  • Prenatal consultation for high-risk obstetrics patients
  • Attendance at high-risk deliveries
  • Comprehensive diagnostic evaluation and intensive care for sick or premature newborns
  • Intensive care transport
  • Outreach education to referring hospitals in our four state regions

Specialized capabilities include

  • Ventilatory support including advanced ventilator modes
  • Neonatal neurological shunt placement
  • Nutrition management
  • Specialized Cranial cooling
  • Inhaled Nitric Oxide therapy