THE BRONX - More than 100 families with babies born prematurely in The Bronx came back together this week.

The Montefiore Neonatology Intensive Care Unit (NICU) in Wakefield treated its graduates to a special reunion with the health professionals who helped take care of them.

The rate of premature births has risen more than 20 percent over the past 20 years, meaning many babies are too small or sick to go home for weeks after they're first born. Experts say that despite the increase, most go home healthy due to new medical advancements.