Woombie Med Pods were designed to function for staff, family, and baby. The creators of Woombie Med Pods, Karen Barski and Chelsea Vail, pulled their knowledge of various patient populations together and discussed which populations were often left unswaddled and why.
"Bili babies", or babies receiving phototherapy treatments, are often unswaddled because light must reach their skin. So, we created a 360 degree swaddle sack using our patented peanut-shaped swaddle sack in mesh, allowing 95% of light to reach baby's skin.
Chelsea spent much of her Child Life internship and practicum experiences with "trach babies" and post-op cardiac patients. She remembered these babies being unswaddled to decrease risk of infection and debri from blankets near the trachs. So, our Woombie Trach Pod was designed with a deep v-neck to keep trach area clear while keeping baby swaddled tight for comfort and security.
Chelsea spent four years as a Child Life Specialist on the Hematology/Oncology unit at Dell Children's Medical Center. This unit also cared for "gastro" patients; including many post-operative for colostomy bags, g-buttons, and short bowel surgeries. These babies were almost never swaddled! Medical staff needs quick, efficient access to the midsection to assess healing, provide care, provide feeds, or change bags. The Woombie Gastro Pod has the ability to close, or open the midsection of the swaddle for easy access. Problem solved!
Our Woombie Med Pod is based on the award winning, Woombie original, designed for safe sleep, comfort, warmth, and security. Revisions were made for a medical setting including the front, rear, and side slits for vital signs checks, central lines, chest tubes, drains, or other treatment needs.
Finally, the Woombie Gel Pod! Unfortunately, neonates miss out on valuable time in-utero to finish growth and development. Being laid flat in a crib unswaddled is unnatural, and harmful to many areas of development. The Woombie Gel Pod contains a removeable gel insert to relieve pressure from a flat crib and absorb shock from movement and transport similar to that of the womb. The neonate can move freely inside the swaddle sack, but experience flexion and develop muscle tone within the confines of the swaddle.
Order one or all five for your unit and #swaddleeverybaby!
Today's hospitals are focused on "Family Centered Care", meaning the medical staff is involving families ain patient care. In the NICU, parents and grandparents are encouraged to visit often, hold babies, feed babies, assist nurses with bathing, and complete diaper changes. Even siblings as young as three are encouraged to visit.
Prior to co-founding Barski Vail Designs, LLC, I (Chelsea Vail), worked as a Child Life Specialist. In both my practicum and internship I spent time in NICUs and as a professional I was the NICU backup. I consider myself a medical professional. I'm comfortable holding babies regardless of size, health, medical devices or machines that may be in the way. I'm trained to be comfortable and I've experienced it all.
However, when my son, Cash was in the NICU after birth, I found myself feeling like a fish out of water at his bedside. I was in the NICU as a parent, not a staff member. I didn't feel comfortable touching or holding my own son without expressed permission. I was worried I'd accidentally unlatch an EKG lead or tangle a central line. I didn't want nurses upset with me because I was so fragile as a new mom- still healing both physically and emotionally.
Woombie Med Pods, Gel Pods, and Bili Pods prevent this nervous feeling and help support Family Centered Care initiative. A neonate wrapped tightly in a Woombie is not at risk for tangled leads because they fit in the specifically placed slits on the front, back, and sides. The limbs are held securely in the 360 degree swaddle sack to avoid startling the infant and causing an unnecessary flight or flight response. A parent, or caregiver, may find the neonate less intimidating to hold when they're swaddled in a Woombie Med Pod.
Unwrapping an infant from a traditional blanket swaddle to change a diaper can be overstimulating and waste valuable energy, but the patented double zipper allows parents and staff to access the baby for diaper changes without disturbance. Imagine the wave of calm over the mother changing her baby's diaper while he rests peacefully in his swaddle.
"Gosh, I would've felt much better leaving my babies everyday knowing they were wrapped up in that thing. At least they would've felt like I was still there." -Katie, Austin, TX, mother of twins
Traditionally, "bili" babies, or babies with elevated bilirubin levels have been placed in a crib underneath phototherapy lights. Some hospitals use a phototherapy blanket, some use a wand, but no matter what type of treatment is used, these babies are left alone, unswaddled.
A nurse will come periodically and turn the baby to side-body position, supine, or prone, but they're left untouched and without boundaries except for a bendy bumper perhaps. The infant is sleeping and not in any pain so it may seem to the untrained eye that they're happy; however, their development and psychosocial wellbeing is still compromised. ALL newborns, especially neonates, need to be swaddled.
The Woombie Bili Pod is the first, and only, hospital grade swaddle sack for Bili babies! It's patented peanut-shaped swaddle keeps infant contained, but it's mesh fabric allows 95% of light through from phototherapy. Central lines, monitors and other medical devices can be weaved through mesh or using the patented double zipper. Families and nurses can complete diaper changes without disturbing the infant or causing undue stress from overstimulation.
"The Woombie Bili Pod is genius! I can't wait to get these on our mother/baby unit!"- Leslie Brake, Seton Healthcare Nurse, and inventor of the ACK Wrap
Chelsea Vail, MA, CCLS, Newborn Care Specialist and contributing inventor of Woombie Med Pods.