Today, 800 meters from the birthplace of Jesus Christ, one special door is always open to the poor and destitute expectant mothers; Holy Family Hospital - Bethlehem, a state of the art maternity hospital, because "the poorest deserve the best".
As the primary referral hospital for expectant mothers and babies in the region, Holy Family Hospital accepts the greater region’s most challenging medical cases. The 18-bed NICU cares for premature newborns, including a subset of these fragile infants known as “micro-preemies” who weigh as little as 450 grams (16 ounces) at birth.
Care for these babies is highly resource-intensive, requiring lifesaving support and transfers to partner hospitals for specialized surgical procedures. Such surgeries are often followed by months of follow-up treatment in Holy Family Hospital’s NICU until each baby is well enough to go home in his or her parents’ care.
As ours is the only NICU in the Bethlehem region equipped to deliver and save babies born before 32 weeks and as little as 450 grams (16 ounces), it is imperative that the NICU remain well-resourced, especially during periods of heightened conflict.
Miraculously, the Hospital’s NICU team has achieved a survival rate of nearly 100%, rivalling many hospitals found in Western Europe. Infants as small as 1 pound are regularly nurtured to full health and over 450 premature babies’ lives are saved each year.