Published on January 28, 2021

Specialized Care for High-Risk Moms & Premature Babies Coming to Silver Cross

To enhance the care provided women and children, Silver Cross plans to add Birthing Suites and a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU).

Construction has already begun to build three more labor, delivery and recovery rooms (LDRs) bringing the total to 15 LDRs and 30 postpartum rooms. The new Birthing Suites equipped with all the current amenities and laboring tub, will be ready this spring just in time for the baby boom brought on by the COVID-19 lockdown.

“With over 3,000 deliveries in 2020, more babies are born at Silver Cross than any other hospital in Will County,” said Ruth Colby, Silver Cross President and CEO.  “Not only does this create an urgent need for more beds but also more advanced care for mom and baby.”

Will County’s first Level 3 NICU

Around the country, high risk pregnancies are on the rise brought about by chronic health conditions and the opioid epidemic causing more babies to be born prematurely requiring more complex care. 

“Last year, we had to transfer more than 50 babies by ambulance or helicopter to other hospitals for a higher level of care, said Marilyn Paollella, Director of Maternal and Child Services. “This can be very stressful for parents and grandparents as they are separated from their baby for weeks and even months during what can be a touch and go situation.”

NICU BedSilver Cross currently does not have the capability to treat babies born earlier than 30 weeks or weighing 2lbs 12 ounces or less. However that will all change in 2022, when the Hospital opens the county’s only Level 3 neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). 

“We will have specialized expertise and comprehensive resources available to treat the smallest and sickest newborns as well as full-term babies with congenital disorders,” said Marilyn.  “Our patients will be safely cared for around the clock by a team of highly skilled neonatologists, neonatal nurse practitioners, neonatal nurses, developmental care specialists, respiratory therapists, nutritionists and social workers.  And, patients will have immediate access to pediatric medical and surgical subspecialists.”

The state-of-the-art 24 bed NICU will be built on the third floor of the hospital’s eastside addition – just above the new cardiac operating rooms, and will connect to the current Birthing Center.  The unit is modeled after Lurie Children’s Hospital’s NICU and is projected to cost $11.3 million.

NICU HallEach newborn will have their own room offering a quiet environment for sleep and recovery. The NICU will provide comfort and convenience for families with a family lounge where they can relax between testing, which can take several hours.  There is also a family transition room for parents to spend the night before the baby is discharged home, consultation rooms to talk with specialists, and a treatment room for minor procedures.  


Help Give Babies a Fighting Chance – Donate Today!

To make a charitable donation to support Silver Cross Hospital’s NICU and Birthing Center, click here or send your check payable to Silver Cross Foundation, 1900 Silver Cross Blvd., New Lenox, IL 60451. For more information, including commemorative naming opportunities, contact Tracy Simons at 815-300-7113 or

Donate to Silver Cross

Donate to the Silver Cross Foundation now or call (815) 300-7105 for more information.


Physicians on Silver Cross Hospital’s Medical Staff have expertise in their areas of practice to meet the needs of patients seeking their care. These physicians are independent practitioners on the Medical Staff and are not the agents or employees of Silver Cross Hospital. They treat patients based upon their independent medical judgment and they bill patients separately for their services.