Parent's Guide to the NICU

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Our Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) team is dedicated to caring for both your baby and your family as your baby grows and adjusts. Here you will find information on what to expect in the Le Bonheur NICU.

Getting to the NICU

The NICU is located on the fourth floor at Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital.  More information on location and parking can be found here

What to expect when your baby arrives in the NICU

When your baby comes to NICU, we will receive a report from the transport team and complete a thorough assessment. Parts of this will include vital signs, measurements, medication history, and any necessary admission testing (diagnostic imaging, ultrasounds, lab work, etc.). Your baby will be on continuous heart, oxygen, and respiratory monitoring for the duration of his or her stay. We will also introduce you to the doctors, nurses, and support staff that will partner with you in your child’s care. We will keep you informed and give you a personalized code to contact us 24/7 for questions and updates about your baby.

Contacting the NICU

Our number is 901-287-8400. Upon our first contact with you, our unit coordinator or critical care representative will issue you a privacy code to use each time you call the NICU. Each time you call, the unit coordinator or critical care representative will verify your code and connect you to your baby's nurse. We are available to speak with you 24/7 for any of you or your baby's needs.

Our team

Our specialized team in the NICU includes neonatologists, neonatal nurse practitioners (NNPs) and neonatal nurses. Our board-certified neonatologists are pediatric physicians specially trained in the care of ill and premature newborns. Le Bonheur’s NNPs are board-certified, advanced practice nurses with specialized education in neonatology. NNPs provide specialized medical management and treatment for ill or premature newborns under supervision and in collaboration with neonatologists. Our neonatal nurses go through a distinctive, nationally standardized educational program with concentration on newborns in order to provide excellent, individualized nursing care for your baby. Our team conducts research to further the field of knowledge about neonatology.

For more information about the other Le Bonheur team members you may see, please visit Our Care Team

Daily rounds

Your baby’s care team will round on your baby each day, generally between 9 a.m. and noon. Daily rounds generally include the neonatologist, NNPs, nurse, pharmacist, dietitian and social worker. This is the time when all of your baby’s issues are discussed and plans are made for the next 24 hours. We hold daily rounds at your baby’s bedside, and we invite you to participate. This is the best time to bring up your concerns, ask questions and talk about your baby.

Breastfeeding

Although your baby may be unable to begin breastfeeding shortly after birth, it is important to establish and maintain a good milk supply. Our breastfeeding support program offers a number of helpful tips, resources and guides that you may find useful. We have two lactation rooms available in the NICU and encourage pumping at the bedside as well. We also offer a team of lactation consultants to assist you while you are here at the hospital.

Kangaroo care

Kangaroo care is the practice of holding your baby skin-to-skin. In addition to the emotional benefits, this nurturing contact can help maintain your child's body warmth, regulate heart and breathing rates, encourage him or her to spend more time in deep sleep and improve breastfeeding.

Preventing infections

Hand washing is extremely important. Please use the hand sanitizer bottles and/or the hand washing sink in your baby’s room. It is important for everyone, including parents and family members, to clean their hands before touching your baby and whenever they enter or leave your baby’s room. This reduces the spread of germs in our environment.

Visitors

Parents are not considered visitors and are welcome around the clock. Grandparents are welcome around the clock as well, and can visit without a parent if you wish for them to do so. Friends and family, 18 and older, are welcome to visit with a parent present. Siblings of your baby are allowed to visit except during community outbreaks of flu or RSV. Everyone who comes to visit your baby  will be asked to complete a health screening at the front desk and wash his or her hands prior to entering the NICU. We perform health screenings to protect your baby from infection.

Amenities and Services

Preparing for your hospital stay contains helpful information about amenities and services provided at the hospital as well as what to expect when staying in the hospital overnight.

Contact Neonatology