Moms mark World Prematurity Day with gifts of hope

Monday, November 18, 2019

On Friday, former NICU parents brought “gifts of hope” to parents who currently have newborns in Greenwich Hospital’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit to mark World Prematurity Day. Pictured here (l-r) are Lorrie Hillman-Ozimek, Kathy Meenan, RN, Jeanne Van Sciver, RN, Sharon Gordon, RN, Carmen Murphy, Modestus Lee, MD, Benjamin Tsang, MD, Mercy Padavil, RN, Jennifer Silva-Sadder and Jennifer’s son.
Greenwich, CT (Nov. 18, 2019) – Three Connecticut mothers who recall the challenges of having premature babies marked World Prematurity Day by bringing “gifts of hope” to parents who currently have a newborn in Greenwich Hospital’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.

Madison residents Lorrie Hillman-Ozimek and Carmen Murphy along with Jennifer Silva-Sadder of Norwalk visited Greenwich Hospital on Friday bearing gifts for NICU parents and their newborns. World Prematurity Day is observed on November 17 each year to raise awareness of preterm births and the challenges preterm babies and their families face.

“It’s important to bring some happiness and hope to NICU parents who may be experiencing dark days. It’s a tough journey. We want them to know they are not alone,” said Hillman-Ozimek. Her son – born at 28 weeks weighing 2 pounds, 7 ounces nine years ago – spent 53 days in Greenwich Hospital’s NICU. “I knew my baby was in the very best hands,” she said.

The gift bags include board books, clothing, baby wipes, diaper cream and journals – all donated by the three moms. Each bag also has a handwritten note signed by these mothers with the name and age of their preemies expressing their understanding and best wishes.

For Silva-Sadder, bringing gifts to NICU parents is a “way of giving back to all the people who helped us” when her son was born at 27 weeks weighing 1 pound, 14 ounces. He spent 93 days in the NICU. “It was scary,” she said. “But the nurses were fantastic. They were like family.”

This is the fourth year that former NICU parents bring gifts to the hospital.

“We are so grateful for the thoughtful generosity of these families,” said Jeanne Van Sciver, RN, Greenwich Hospital’s perinatal/neonatal senior coordinator. “We love when parents visit, seeing pictures of their children and hearing progress reports on how our ‘graduates’ are doing. The parents who receive these gift bags feel the love that goes into them. It truly is a labor of love.”

Greenwich Hospital is a member of Yale New Haven Health. Greenwich is a 206-bed (includes 32 isolettes) community hospital serving lower Fairfield County, Connecticut and Westchester County, New York. It is a academic affiliate of Yale School of Medicine. Since opening in 1903, Greenwich Hospital has evolved into a progressive medical center and teaching institution representing all medical specialties and offering a wide range of medical, surgical, diagnostic and wellness programs. Greenwich Hospital is recognized throughout the healthcare industry as a leader in service and patient satisfaction excellence. Greenwich Hospital has the prestigious Magnet designation from the American Nurses Credentialing Center, the nation’s highest honor of nursing excellence.

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