Resources for NICU families
Talk to your bedside nurse right away if you plan to breast-feed your baby, as you will need to begin using a breast pump within 24 hours after delivery. Your nurse will arrange for you to meet with a lactation consultant, who can explain how often to pump. The NICU has several rooms equipped with a hospital-grade pump, as well as comfortable seating and a sink for cleaning pump parts. A pump occasionally may be available for you to use at the bedside.
Learn techniques for a successful breastfeeding experience through Novant Health Nursing Mother’s Place. Lactation consultants have been certified by an international board. Services are available during and after your stay at Novant Health Presbyterian Medical Center and at other Novant Health medical centers.
Pierce’s Project: A project of Novant Healthcare Foundation, this organization supports Charlotte-area families of micropreemies, which would include children born before 28 weeks of gestation and/or weighing less 2 pounds. Members also provide care packages to families of babies born at less than 28 weeks of gestation. The packages also contain information about NICU family support.
Bee Mighty: Provides funding to “graduates” of the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) for medical therapy and equipment once they have been discharged.
Madelyn’s Fund: The fund offers financial assistance to help ease stress and allow families to focus on their well-being. If you have experienced financial stress due to time off work, travel costs or medical bills, or if you have expenses from a burial, there may be support available through this fund.
Beads of Courage: Your family can receive beads to add to a necklace, to recognize major milestones and treatments completed. You also can pick up a journal near the handwashing sink in the NICU. A volunteer is in the NICU once a week, normally on Fridays, to help with gathering the beads. If you cannot be here during that time, you may leave your bead journal and bag for our volunteer, and she will be happy to collect the beads for you.
Journals: Available for NICU families to document their stories and keep track of other information. You will receive yours at admission. Ask questions and take notes when talking with caregivers. The nurses and doctors are there to help you understand and make informed decisions about your child’s care. Write down your questions for later if the staff is busy. You will also receive information from the American Academy of Pediatrics, National Association of Neonatal Nurses and the March of Dimes.
There is information available in your welcome packet (green sheet) regarding Supplemental Security Income (SSI) for Premature Infants. Detailed information regarding criteria and point of contact is provided on this sheet. Please take a minute to read over the material, as it may be applicable to your baby. SSI can be an additional monetary resource for you and your family if your infant qualifies. The initial application must be initiated by you (the parent) as soon after birth as possible and before discharge. After reviewing the information, please contact our case manager if you have questions.