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The Moses family — mum Kathryn, dad Kereru and their baby, who is yet to be named — received a pamper package in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) yesterday, as well as a cheque and knitted clothes on behalf of the hospital to celebrate World Prematurity Day. Nationwide, the rate of premature babies, born at less than 37 weeks gestation, is about 10% according to the Neonatal Trust.
The Moses’ son is still in an incubator, and is now a week old. He had a rocky start to life, born unexpectedly in Invercargill at 30 weeks, and then being helicoptered to Dunedin Hospital the following morning.
Mrs Moses said she went into "very spontaneous labour" which lasted only about two hours. Mr Moses said the couple were still trying to choose between two names, but had nicknamed the baby "Turbo" because he would not stop moving around.
At the end of next week, the baby would be able to go back to the Southland Hospital’s neonatal intensive care unit, which took babies from 32 weeks onwards.
"He’s doing really well," Mrs Moses said.
"We have to take one day at a time."
Riversdale Lions Club member Heather Fowler was at the hospital on Friday to present the NICU with tiny garments knitted by club members and their partners for the babies on the ward. The Lions club and their families had created enough baby clothes to fill a 35-litre container, and the arrangement would be ongoing, Mrs Fowler said. NICU duty charge nurse Juliet Manning said at any one time the unit generally had between 12 and 14 babies, and about half of the families with babies in the unit were from outside Dunedin.
A cheque of $500 was also presented to the ward by the Children’s Recreational Enterprise Support Trust, and a separate cheque of $500 was given by the trust to the children’s ward of the hospital. Mrs Moses also received a pamper pack from a group of ex-NICU mums to mark the day.