We know that having a baby in special care is a worrying time for parents and their families but you can be reassured that we will take good care of you and your baby.
Our expert team of consultants, neonatal and specialist nurses provide care on the unit. The unit has 11 cots providing different levels of care depending on the needs of each baby. These levels of care are known as special care and transitional care for when a baby still needs some medical treatment, but does not need to be separated from their mother, and also for babies who are almost ready to go home.
We have a family room for parents where they are welcome to stay over and be with their baby as much as possible.
Visiting the special care baby unit
You are encouraged to spend as much time with your baby as possible. We realise that family and friends are also keen to see the new arrival and also provide support to the parents. However, we have a duty to protect both baby and parents and we have to limit the time and number of visitors to prevent possible exposure to infection.
Being with your baby
Parents and siblings of the baby are welcome anytime during the day and evening, grandparents are welcomed between 8am and 8pm and all other visitors between 12 midday and 8pm.
To limit the risk of infection to our babies we ask that no small children (under 10 years) visit unless they are a sibling of the baby or it has been arranged with the team. Due to limited space around the cot areas there is a maximum of four visitors allowed at any one time
We ask everyone coming into the unit to remove outdoor coats (there are pegs and lockers provided) and when entering rooms with babies to wash their hands before approaching the cot.
The only times that parents would be asked to temporarily leave is if other babies are having certain procedures or there is an emergency in the room.
Ward Round is between 9am to 11am each morning where you can speak to your babies doctor, however if you wish to speak to a doctor outside of these times this can easily be arranged, just ask your nurse.
What to do when you arrive at the unit
For the safety of the babies the special care baby unit has a locked entrance. This means that entry is permitted only to parents and visitors once they have identified themselves using the intercom system.
To enter the unit you should press the buzzer on the left hand side of the entrance and we will let you in.
You will need to remove your outdoor coats and place them on designated hooks outside the parents’ sitting room. Please take all personal belongings with you and don’t leave any valuables.
There is kitchen area for parents to make hot drinks. Food can be brought in and can be eaten in the parents’ sitting room. Iced drinking water is also available. Food and hot drinks should not be taken into the nursery.
The best way to protect your baby from infection is to wash your hands. Each time you enter the nursery we ask that you remove rings (except wedding rings), watches and bracelets.
You will need to roll up long sleeves and wash your hands and as far as your elbow. This is very important that everyone who has contact with any baby within the unit does this.
Visiting if you are unwell
We ask visitors to avoid coming to the unit if they are unwell. If parents are unwell they should take advice from the nurse looking after their baby to find out if it is safe for them to visit as infection is a risk to a poorly or premature baby.
Special Care Baby Unit
Second floor, tower block
University Hospital of North Tees