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Family-Centered Neonatal Care

Mass General for Children pediatricians are dedicated to providing family-centered care with an emphasis on the special developmental issues of newborns. We are committed to meeting the needs of the entire family and encourage families to stay together throughout the birth process and during their hospital stay. To this end, we were recently awarded the Baby-Friendly designation from Baby-Friendly USA (BFUSA), a credentialing program for hospitals that is part of an international initiative led by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Children’s Fund. Learn more about rooming in at Mass General.

Expert Staff

In addition to board-certified pediatricians, our staff includes:

  • Advanced practice nurses
  • Lactation and feeding consultants
  • Audiologists
  • Neonatal respiratory care professionals
  • Pastoral care providers
  • Social workers
  • Nutritionists

Close Collaboration with Your Pediatrician

Staff physicians care for infants on the “house” service and pediatricians in private practice and the Massachusetts General Hospital-affiliated health centers care for their own patients in the newborn nursery. The Neonatal Unit encourages all parents to have their infants seen by their primary care provider within 48 hours of discharge. The infant’s hospital paperwork is given to the family at the time of discharge. Many infants receive home visits from Partners Homecare agencies.

Parent Education

We promote teaching families about safety issues and incorporate the Back-to-Sleep program and car-seat safety training into our one-on-one educational program. Breastfeeding is strongly encouraged and supported, and currently 82 percent of babies are breastfed at the time of discharge from the Mother and Child Center. We have lactation specialists on staff to help more women successfully breastfeed their babies.

Newborn Screening and Testing

The audiology staff of the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary performs hearing tests on all newborns. Infants who need additional services are immediately seen by an audiologist and scheduled for a more extensive exam.

Jaundice is a common condition seen in a majority of newborns, particularly if they are breastfeeding. All infants are monitored for jaundice during their newborn stay at Mass General for Children. Monitoring includes utilizing a non-invasive jaundice screening for all newborns before going home. The nurseries at MGfC treat newborn jaundice with intensive phototherapy, which is considered a part of standard jaundice therapy by the American Academy of Pediatrics.

State-of-the-Art Facilities in a World-Renowned Academic Medical Center

Patients and referring physicians have immediate access to our neonatology specialists and pediatric subspecialists who support the intricate medical and developmental needs of newborns. In case of a complication during pregnancy, or if a child is born with a health problem undiagnosed by prenatal screening, families have immediate access to physicians and surgeons in virtually every specialty and subspecialty of medicine as well as our neonatal intensive care unit, which opened in June of 2006.

Patient Resources

View the full collection of patient resources from Newborn Services at MGfC.