Taking Baby Home

Preparing for home
Each infant cared for in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) is unique. No two follow the same medical course of treatment or the same timeline.

In general, your baby is ready to go home when:

  • Feedings progress to bottle or breast, and there is an established weight gain
  • Breathing pattern has matured
  • Body temperature is maintained

Car seat study
Any infant born at less than 37 weeks gestation, or who is discharged home on oxygen or a monitor, will have a car seat study done. Your baby will be placed in a car seat, usually following a feeding. Breathing, heart rate and oxygen levels will be monitored. Depending on the results of this test, your baby’s doctor may recommend a special type of car seat or bed; or further observation.

Hearing test
Detecting hearing problems early can connect your baby with special follow-up services. The newborn hearing screening takes place before your baby leaves the hospital. Soft sounds are played through special ear phones, and your baby’s response to sound is measured.