Kendall Regional nurse ‘knows how it feels’ to have a preemie baby during holidays

Seeing your baby in the neo-natal intensive care unit (NICU) on a normal day is hard in and of itself. Having a baby in the NICU during the holidays can make it even harder. Kendall Regional Medical Center NICU Nurse Gabriela Valdez was determined to spread some holiday cheer last month by continuing her tradition of making and creating holiday costumes for her tiniest patients.

Not only is Gabriela is a NICU Nurse, but she is also the mother of three NICU babies, which she claims is the reason she does what she does every single day.

“It was very, very hard. It made me realize and see things differently as a NICU Nurse. The fear that you have when all of a sudden, the one thing you’ve been carrying inside of you all along, has to be handed over to somebody else and somebody else has to take care of it,” explains Valdez.

“To have the trust in that person and to have to go home, empty handed and leave your baby in the NICU, I know how that feels.”

According to Valdez, it takes a village and her colleagues at Kendall Regional’s NICU Department go above and beyond to make sure the babies feel as comfortable and as happy as possible during her photo shoot.

“We all work together to make this possible,” she said. “These pictures make them look as if they aren’t even in a NICU. They get this one picture of their baby, apart from all the machines and all the pumps and all the oxygen tubing. They get a beautiful picture of their baby during the holidays and it makes them smile.”

Kendall Regional Medical Center, an award-winning 417-bed hospital, is recognized for providing a wide array of services to the residents of South Florida, as well as visitors from around the world. KRMC offers 24-hour comprehensive medical, surgical and diagnostic services, including trauma and burn care, pediatrics and maternity services, an orthopedic and spine institute, along with patient and community services.

For over 45 years, KRMC has been committed to expanding and improving every facet of the organization. Today, the hospital has grown into a major tertiary-care teaching facility, with more than 1,000 physicians and specialists and 1,800 employees.

The main campus of Kendall Regional Medical Center is located at 11750 SW 40 St., Miami, FL 33175. For information visit or call 305-223-3000.

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