All families with an infant in the Newborn Intensive Care Unit (NICU) are offered social work support during their stay at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH).
Family Support Services
In addition to support and counseling, NICU social workers can also assist parents with challenges such as getting the baby registered with insurance, arranging for transportation and managing other life challenges.
All families also are encouraged to involve their own personal support network which can include family members, friends, religious or spiritual leaders, community members, or others. If helpful to the parents, any of these individuals can visit parents and their baby at the hospital.
The loss of a baby is a tragic and emotional experience. Social work and chaplaincy services offer bereavement assistance and religious consolation based on the individual family’s preferences and needs. Social workers provide education and guidance regarding disposition, financial concerns, and sibling issues and can facilitate contact with an appropriate funeral director to assist the baby’s family. If a family would like to request a specific social worker every effort is made to involve that person.
Social workers and chaplains are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. They are also available at all times before, during and after a baby’s passing. The nursing staff will help you arrange for social work services.
NICU Social Services Team
Susan Berliner, LICSW
Alicia Katz, MSW, LISW
Chaplains can be contacted via the page operator as needed and are readily available to offer pastoral support and end-of-life consultations to families and staff.
In non-emergency situations or during the office hours from 9 am to 5 pm, Monday through Friday, call (617) 732-7480 to request a chaplain's visit. If you leave a message, please provide the patient's first and last name, sex, religious denomination, and the patient's pod and room number. You may also leave any information that you think would be helpful to the chaplains.