Babies and Families - Let Our Family Care for Your Family

Family-integrated developmental care is a cornerstone of our philosophy of care at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH). This care enables and supports parents and extended members of the infant’s family to share in the decision making and day-to-day care of their baby. Families truly matter most to us at Brigham and Women’s Hospital for the complete and compassionate care that we deliver for all of our infants.

Our BWH department of pediatric newborn medicine multidisciplinary team is deeply committed to transforming newborn care in ways that educate and empower families to play a significant role as key members of their baby’s health care team. We encourage parents to be present with their babies as much as is reasonably possible while taking into account their individual circumstances and new parents’ need for some time for rest and recovery.

Our NICU Parent Advisory Council and our three wonderful Parent Liaisons, all of whom are former NICU parents, provide insight and guidance to parents and staff alike.

Examples of ways in which we embrace, educate, and engage families include:

Communication

  • Formal multidisciplinary meetings, led by attending neonatologist, within a few days of admission and weekly (or as needed) thereafter
  • Daily bedside updates by both physicians and nurses
  • Parent presence on daily work rounds

Services

  • NICU Parent Liaison consultation
  • Lactation consultation
  • Donor breast milk program (with parental consent)
  • Social work consultation
  • Multidisciplinary discharge planning and care coordination

Activities and Education

  • Skin-to-skin care (‘kangaroo care’)
  • What’s up Doc? — topic-focused evening group educational sessions
  • Brigham Baby Academy — books donated to our NICU are provided as gifts to families for the earliest possible start of parents’ reading to their babies
  • Journey beads
  • Personalized ‘onesies’
  • Scrapbooking
  • Parent date night
  • Evening or weekend family social occasions: ice cream, pizza, and more
  • Mother’s Day and Father’s Day celebrations
  • Parent pre-discharge training in newborn resuscitation (CPR)

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