‘Miracle Baby’ is Doing Great at Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest FloridaChildren's Health
When Raquel Valderrama’s chest and stomach pain wouldn’t go away, she visited the emergency room at NCH.
Raquel, who was six months pregnant, found out she was going into preterm labor. Elkin, her husband, an Army soldier, was finishing training in Virginia. Granted an emergency leave by the Army, Elkin rushed to be at Raquel’s side for the baby’s delivery.
On February 2, 2021, the parents welcomed Valentina into the world. She was only 1 pound, 4 ounces.
Precious babies like Valentina, who are born before 24 weeks, have less than a 50 percent chance of survival.
To give her the care she needed to thrive, Valentina was transferred to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida. The facility is the ONLY one in our region designated as a Regional Perinatal Intensive Care Center by the Florida Department of Children's Medical Services.
Now, almost four months later, Valentina weighs 5 pounds, 6.8 ounces. Raquel says her “little miracle” and “warrior baby” is doing great, continues to gain weight and is getting ready to go home.
Elkin was able to spend some precious time with his new baby before being sent off for a six-month deployment. Valentina’s door at Golisano is decorated with Army boots and the words ‘My daddy is my hero!’ thanks to the staff in the NICU.
The grateful parents thank the NICU pediatric staff for being with them every step of their family’s journey.
NICU at Golisano Children’s Hospital specializes in caring for infants with medical complications. Our dedicated team of board-certified neonatologists, neonatal ICU nurses, nurse practitioners, respiratory and occupational therapists, and dietitians are all experienced in caring for an ill infant’s special needs.