Neonatal System Development

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In 2013, House Bill 15 was passed during the 83rd Legislature, Regular Session. The purpose of the bill was to create level of care designations for hospitals that provide neonatal and maternal services. During the 84th Legislature, Regular Session, 2015, House Bill 3433 amended Health and Safety Code, Chapter 241. The purpose of the bill was to develop initial rules for neonatal/maternal level of care designation. The hospital level of care designations for neonatal and maternal care rules went into effect on June 9, 2016.

The Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) has the authority to designate facilities. The Office of EMS/Trauma Systems Section of DSHS works with hospitals, survey organizations, and the Perinatal Advisory Council (PAC) to:

  • Develop facility designation protocols,
  • Develop policies, and
  • Designate facilities in the state.

*NEW* DSHS Designation Program: Facility Update Form

Use our online verification system to verify your current contact information (instructions).

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Neonatal System Development


Survey Organizations 

Advisory Council and Subcommittee

  • Perinatal Advisory Council (PAC)
    Created by House Bill 15 of the 83rd Texas Legislature (Regular Session), the PAC examines utilization trends in neonatal and maternal care and recommends ways to improve neonatal and maternal outcomes.

  • The Centers of Excellence for Fetal Diagnosis and Therapy
    The Centers of Excellence for Fetal Diagnosis and Therapy subcommittee advises the PAC and the Texas Health and Human Services Commission in the development of rules to establish the criteria a health care entity or program in the state of Texas will have to meet to receive designation as a Center of Excellence for Fetal Diagnosis and Therapy 

Neonatal Facility Designation



The non-refundable neonatal application fees for a three-year designation period are as follows:

  • Level I neonatal facility application fees are as follows:
    • <=100 licensed beds fee is $250.00; or
    •  >100 licensed beds fee is $750.00.
  • Level II neonatal facility application fee is $1,500.00.
  • Level III neonatal facility application fee is $2,000.00.
  • Level IV neonatal facility application fee is $2,500.00.



Resource Documents

These tools may be used to evaluate your facilities compliance with the Neonatal Level of Care that you will be applying for. 

Provider training webinars: Recordings of the training are listed below. Each link will take you to a page where you must enter your name and email address to access the video. 

Webinar recordings:

Neonatal Application Packet Submission and Completion of the Self Audit Tool- September 14, 2016
View System Requirements

PowerPoint presentations from webinars:

Get In Touch

By Email

By Mail

Send mail correspondence to: 
Person's name  
Texas Department of State Health Services  
EMS/Trauma Systems
Attn: Neonatal Designation Program  
PO Box 149347 MC 1876 
Austin, Texas 78714-9347 

Staff Contacts

For designation process or rule clarification, please contact: 
Perinatal Designation Coordinators
Debbie Lightfoot, R.N. - (512) 987-0565

Designation Program Manager
Elizabeth Stevenson, R.N. - (512) 284-1132

Last updated July 26, 2022