Seattle Children’s to Partner with Bozeman Health and St. Peter’s Health on Neonatal and Maternal-Fetal Medicine Program

January 22, 2020

Montana leaders Bozeman Health and St. Peter’s Health, are proud to announce a regional collaboration for the expansion of neonatal intensive care services at Bozeman Health Deaconess Hospital.  As part of the planned expansion, Seattle Children’s will provide expertise on best practices, technical guidance, and training to the growing neonatal care and maternal fetal medicine program housed at Deaconess Hospital. A new joint operating agreement between Bozeman Health and St. Peter’s Health was announced in September 2019. 

Pediatricians, specialists and other members of the care team at Bozeman Health and St. Peter’s Health will be able to draw upon the national expertise of Seattle Children’s and its clinicians to assist the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at Deaconess Hospital in meeting the highest quality and safety standards as they expand capabilities to care for premature babies closer to home. In collaboration with the Bozeman Health and St. Peter’s Health teams, and with input from Seattle Children’s neonatologists and NICU specialists, a Seattle Children’s neonatal nurse practitioner will provide guidance and assistance to Deaconess Hospital as it transitions from a special care nursey to a full NICU.

Seattle Children’s brings extensive experience operating a Level IV NICU on its Seattle campus—the highest level NICU. It treats the most medically fragile premature babies who have life-threatening problems related to inherited conditions, infections, and extreme prematurity. Seattle Children’s also staffs several Level II and III NICUs in Western Washington with its skilled neonatologists and advanced neonatal practitioners. This new relationship with Bozeman Health and St. Peter’s Health will help serve families in the Gallatin Valley and Greater Helena area who would benefit from advanced NICU care at Bozeman Health Deaconess Hospital.  

“Bringing the NICU expertise of Seattle Children’s to Bozeman helps us bridge the gap in rural pediatric healthcare,” shared Bozeman Health president and CEO John Hill. “Their care of pediatric patients and their families is internationally recognized and we’re thrilled to work with their NICU team. This relationship continues our significant efforts to bring quality care close to home, and gives families in the communities we serve a peace of mind knowing that we are working with one of the top 10 children’s hospitals in the nation.”

“This relationship with Seattle Children’s will bring guidance and expertise from an outstanding academic medical center closer to home, so families in Helena and Bozeman can be surrounded by their support system during a difficult time,” said St. Peter’s Health CEO Wade Johnson. “St. Peter’s clinicians will work closely with NICU staff in Bozeman to coordinate critical care needs during a more complex pregnancy or after the birth of a child needing a higher level of intensive care.”

“Research shows that bringing high-quality neonatal care close to home improves immediate and lifelong outcomes,” said Craig Jackson, MD, associate division head for regional neonatal program development at Seattle Children’s. “Access to specialized care delivered by highly trained professionals is an important asset to the community.  We look forward to our collaboration to enhance the level of neonatal care for families in Bozeman and the surrounding area.”

The new women’s and children’s tower at Bozeman Health Deaconess Hospital, currently planned to open in the fall of 2020, includes a NICU that will initially operate as a Level II, providing services to babies born as early as thirty two (32) weeks’ gestation, with plans to transition within a year to a Level III NICU, providing care for babies born as early as twenty eight (28) weeks’ gestation. 

About Bozeman Health
Bozeman Health is an integrated healthcare delivery system serving an eight-county region in Southwest Montana. As a nonprofit organization, governed by a volunteer community board of directors, we are the largest private employer in Gallatin County, with more than 2,300 employees, including 250 medical providers representing 40 clinical specialties. It is our privilege to deliver expert, compassionate health and wellness services across the care continuum, designed to meet the diverse healthcare needs of the communities we serve. Learn more about Bozeman Health at

About St. Peter’s Health
St. Peter’s is a system of health care services including a 99-bed acute care hospital, physician clinics, cancer treatment center, 24-bed behavioral health unit, urgent care clinics, home health and hospice care, dialysis center, and ambulance services. St. Peter’s serves the Helena region and southwest Montana counties of Lewis and Clark, Broadwater, Jefferson, Meagher and Powell, with a combined population of approximately 97,000 residents. The mission of St. Peter’s is to partner with patients, the community and medical staff to provide exceptional and compassionate healthcare. For more information, visit