Neonatal Intensive Care Unit

Some babies may require special medical or nursing care in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. This unit is in the Maternity Hospital.

You may know in advance that your baby will be admitted to the neonatal unit or it may be a decision taken shortly after your baby’s birth. Staff from the unit and postnatal area will support you and keep you fully informed about your baby.

We are happy for you to phone at any time to ask about your baby. Please be aware that we can only give information to parents, unless we have permission from a parent to inform other named family members.

Visiting arrangements

Parents are encouraged to visit at any time. You are the most important person in your baby’s life so you are not a ‘visitor’. You can stay at your baby’s bedside as much as possible. Your presence is important for your baby.

Grandparents are allowed to visit between 2pm and 7pm.

The baby’s brothers and sisters may visit between 2pm and 5pm on a Sunday afternoon. We ask that pre-school children do not visit between September and March as the risk of bronchiolitis is highest during these months. Bronchiolitis can be a very serious illness for babies in the neonatal unit.

Up to two additional nominated adults (including great grandparents) may visit between 5pm and 7pm. The nominated people can only be changed in exceptional circumstances. We have to ensure the safety and security of babies in the unit and having different visitors makes this difficult.

To avoid overcrowding around cots, we ask that you restrict visitors to two at any time.

Feeding in the neonatal unit

Breast milk is an essential part of your baby’s treatment in the neonatal unit.

For further information, please download this leaflet on expressing breast milk.

You can also visit the TinyLife website, which is a great resource for parents of premature babies. It has plenty of practical advice and short videos of parents and healthcare professionals.