Every year, approximately 1000 sick or preterm babies born in Western Australia need to be transferred to either Perth Children’s Hospital (PCH) or King Edward Hospital (KEMH) for intensive care. The Newborn Emergency Transport Service of Western Australia (NETS WA) is a specialist team of doctors and nurses solely dedicated to providing neonatal intensive care during transport. The service operates in the world’s largest retrieval area, spanning over 2500km, providing support to metropolitan, regional and remote centres. NETS WA also offers expert neonatal advice and support to doctors, nurses and midwives via the NETS WA Hotline, ensuring intensive care begins as soon as possible. NETS WA also back-transfers neonates to their hospital of birth when they no longer need intensive care, enabling the baby to be closer to home.
NETS WA is a division of the Neonatology Clinical Care Unit (NCCU) of KEMH & PCH. We are based in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at the new Perth Children’s Hospital. The majority of babies retrieved by NETS WA are admitted to the NICU at PCH, but more preterm babies (<30 weeks gestation) are admitted to the NICU at KEMH.
NETS WA works in conjunction with St John Ambulance, Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS) and Medical Air. With RFDS, we retrieve babies >200km from metropolitan Perth on fixed-wing PC-12 Pilatus aircraft. St John Ambulance provides drivers for our dedicated NETS Ambulance, and extra vehicles when we have more than one retrieval at a time.