MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 13, 2021
For families who have had a premature or sick newborn, going home is a very special milestone. Finally, there’s the green light to take your baby home.
While it can be an exciting time, it can also be daunting after spending weeks or months under specialised care. There are often a range of different emotions that families experience as leaving the hospital can bring new challenges.
One of the biggest hurdles that parents face is being able to transition from being in a situation with 24-hour hospital care to providing the 24-hour care needed at home. You may be nervous leaving the care and guidance of the doctors and nurses who cared for your baby, and at times it can be a little overwhelming taking on full responsibility for all of your baby’s needs.
The NICU journey is extremely demanding and it is common for parents to feel emotionally and physically depleted. When your baby is discharged from the hospital, the constant demands of caring for your newborn and lack of sleep can be exacerbated, but it is important to look after yourself.
If your baby has recently been discharged from hospital, remember that it is okay for you to ask for help from your family, friends or health care providers if you feel like you are overwhelmed or struggling to cope, especially at times like this. Health professionals such as your paediatrician, GP or family health nurse will be willing to give any help or support you need and of course feel free to ring the NurtureLine (24hr family support line: 1300 622 243 /1300 MBABIES). More information on going home can also be found here: Going Home - Miracle Babies
"When Amiyah was born at 25 weeks, she weighed just 566 grams and her doctors gave her a 30% chance of survival. Thirteen weeks later, she weighed 2.2kg and finally got to come home with us on an apnea monitor. I was scared – she was tiny and rarely cried like a typical baby, much less acted like a three-month-old. It’s nerve-racking at times being a mum to a premmie baby, but I thank God that she is here."
– Carmela, mum to Amiyah born at 25 weeks
The Miracle Babies Grad Bag was launched in 2018 to provide further support to families as they make the transition home. This pack includes helpful information and items to provide reassurance and confidence as they find their new normal.
If your hospital doesn’t currently provide these packs, you can order yours here: Grad Bag (Going Home) - Miracle Babies
Alternatively, get in touch with your NICU or Special Care Nursery team to suggest these for future families via your hospital. Hospitals can get in contact with the team at Miracle Babies to request this resource for their unit.
BabyLove is proud to once again sponsor 750 bags between now and July 2022, for families being discharged with their newborn.
BabyLove also continues to provide funding toward our vital NurtureProgram services each year.
“Going home represents the new journey of really feeling like a family. Although it can be scary to leave the safety of the hospital and the staff being with you at all times, it is a beautiful time. It is important for new parents to take care of themselves and feel comfortable to ask for help. When I had my second son at 27 weeks, I remember noticing that family and friends seemed unsure about how to react, what to say or what we needed. It is such a sensitive time and while every situation is different, we do encourage extended family and friends to be there to support the new family.” – Melinda Cruz, Founder Miracle Babies Foundation and mum to 3 Premmie Babies
Have a family or friend going through it? Sometimes, from the outside, it’s hard to know exactly what to say or do. Take a look at some tips from Miracle Babies Foundation to help you support a friend or family member: EXTENDED FAMILY & FRIENDS ADVICE
Thank you BabyLove for your ongoing support.