a. When your baby needs special care

Having a baby can be a wonderful time in your life. But if something goes wrong, it can be hard. Your baby may need to be in the hospital neonatal or newborn intensive care unit, also called the NICU,

The NICU is the place in the hospital where certain newborn babies go for special care. Some of these babies are born too early. Others may have birth defects, breathing problems or an infection. All babies in the NICU need medical care and need to be watched around the clock.

You may not want to leave your baby in the NICU, even for a short time. You may feel worried and upset and have many questions. 


"I was more than 40 weeks pregnant when Jack was born by c-section. He had trouble breathing, low blood pressure and poor color. I was told he had an infection that needed to be treated with antibiotics in the NICU.

I knew Jack would be in the hospital longer than me, but I didn’t understand what it meant until I was discharged. A woman who had a baby the same day I did stopped by my room to say goodbye. She had her baby in her arms and looked so happy and proud. She asked what time Jack and I were going home. Having to say out loud that I would be leaving without Jack was the hardest thing for me."

Susan, mom to a baby with an infection