Our Special Care Nursery (NICU) takes care of our smallest of patients

Level I Nursery

The Telfair BirthPlace provides newborn care in the same room as the new mother. The nursing staff provides support and encourages new parents to participate and gain confidence caring for their newborn.

Special Care Level II Neonatal Intensive Care Unit

If your baby develops a problem after birth, he or she will be cared for in our Level II Nursery. Our team of compassionate, highly trained nurses care for infants born prematurely, with low birth weight or other difficulties.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long will my baby be in the special care nursery?
Every baby is unique. Sometimes the doctors can provide an estimate for you. Rest assured that your baby will receive the best medical care possible. Our experienced staff are loving and gentle, caring for each infant with compassion and skill.

How do I get information about my child?
The most important way for you to stay informed is to talk with us - we encourage your questions. Please call us as often as you like at 912-819-6426. All communication with you is confidential. Though we realize your relatives and friends will be concerned about your baby, we maintain your right to privacy by releasing information only to you, the parents. For security reasons, the infant's hospital identification number, as written on the mother's armband, must be given to the nurse before any information is released to you by phone.

When may I visit my baby?
You may visit at any time and stay for as long as you wish. We encourage frequent visits; being together is important for both you and your baby. There are visitation guidelines to ensure a safe and efficient environment.

When may I hold and feed my baby?
It may be a while before you can hold and feed your baby, but there are many other ways you can be involved.

May I breastfeed my baby?
If you were planning to breastfeed, you may still do so. Let us know right away so we can find the resources you need. If you are in the hospital, ask your nurse to help you get started, and she also can connect you with our board-certified lactation consultant.

What can I expect when visiting my baby for the first time?
Your baby may look different than what you expect or remember and may be surrounded by unfamiliar staff members and equipment. We will explain your baby's equipment when you first visit.

What kind of equipment will be used?
Most babies sleep in beds designed to keep them warm. For some, the source of heat is an overhead warmer, while others are kept warm inside an incubator. You will probably see very thin wires taped to your baby's skin with gentle adhesive. These wires are attached to monitors that measure heart and breathing rates.

If your baby's heart rate or breathing patterns change, the monitors alarm the staff. Your baby may have an intravenous line (IV) for administering fluids and medicine. IVs are usually placed in tiny veins in the skin over your baby's head, hand or foot (these sites are easiest to access and are the most comfortable). You may notice a very narrow tube going into your baby's belly button. This tube is called an umbilical catheter or umbilical line. This kind of IV can be used to obtain blood samples. Once in, umbilical lines and IVs are not painful.

My baby is having trouble breathing. What does that mean?
Breathing trouble (either too slow or fast) is a common reason for admittance to the special care nursery. Sometimes premature babies' lungs are not completely developed, causing breathing difficulty. Other babies retain fluid in their lungs after birth. 

Who are the people working in the special care nursery?
Many staff members play a part in the care of your baby, including nurses, physicians and specialists. We also have a full-time clinical nurse specializing in newborn nursing.

Everyone on staff cares about your baby and has a role in helping him or her get healthy as soon as possible. 

 

 

 

 

Find a Physician

Meet the team at St. Joseph's/Candler

Our team of highly-skilled doctors are experienced in many aspects of healthcare from primary care to emergent care to specialty care. Find a physician that meets your needs.