NICU Care Takes A VILLAGE
Updated: Nov 2
Caring for a NICU baby requires a village! “Who Will Be Taking Care of My Baby?” Often times a NICU admission can be overwhelming to say the least! There are so many different Doctors, Nurses, and ancillary teams who care for our tiniest fighters! I always encourage parents to ask questions one of which being "What role do you do while caring for my baby?" Here is a list of health care providers you may encounter in the NICU!
NICU TEAMS CAN INCLUDE:
Doctor specializing in newborn intensive care who heads up the medical team
Neonatology Fellows, Medical Residents, and Medical Students
All pursuing their training at different levels
A pediatrician who works solely in the hospital setting
Neonatal nurse practitioner
A nurse practitioner (NP) with additional training in neonatology care
A doctor who has special medical training to care for a baby’s or child’s heart.
A doctor who has special medical training to care for a baby’s or child’s digestive system. The digestive system is made up of organs and tubes that digest (break down) food a baby eats.
A doctor who has special medical training to care for a baby’s or child’s brain and spinal cord. The spinal cord is the bundle of nerves that carries signals between the brain and the body.
A doctor who has special medical training to care for a baby’s or child’s lungs.
Those most responsible for day-to-day care are Nurses. You might come to know them very well and rely on them for information and reassurances about your baby.
Various Surgeons or Specialists
Such as a neurologist, a cardiologist, or a surgeon to treat specific issues with the brain, heart, etc.
Specialty therapists who help manage respiratory care, manage ventilators, administers treatments, intubate, extubate, etc. Anything that helps with breathing
Who helps babies with feeding & or swallowing problems
Who helps determine the babies nutritional needs. (IV fluids, feeds, vitamins, fats, proteins, electrolytes, weight gain etc.
Physical therapist and/or Speech Occupational Therapist
Who work with the babies developmental needs including feeding, movement, massage, mile stones, etc. with the infants and their parents
A person who has special training in how medicines work and the side effects they may cause. People get prescription medicine from a pharmacist. Pharmacists also provide medicines in the hospital.
Provides babies & their families soft, soothing music therapy in the heeling process to grow with healthy stimulation
Who can counsel you and provide comfort; chaplains may be interfaith or of a particular religious affiliation, but they're there to support anyone looking for a spiritual/religious connection
Who helps you get the services you need and also lends emotional support by connecting you to other families and therapists, if needed
Child Life Specialist
A trained professional who helps children and their families during challenging events. Child life specialists can help older children if they have a brother or sister in the NICU.
A person who has special training to help women breastfeed.
I hope you find this helpful! And remember, it is always good to ask who they are! Sometimes they forget to mention that part. :)
Tori Meskin BSN RNC-NIC has been a clinician since 2012, works in acute care/inpatient NICU & Pediatric settings in southern California. She is a blogger, podcaster, NICU & Pediatric Critical Care RN, MSN student, a Barco Uniforms Ambassador, and Brave beginnings affiliate. Find her at www.tipsfromtori.com or firstname.lastname@example.org