NICU Family Education & Information

Welcome to Hurley Medical Center’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit

Your baby’s doctor has recommended that your baby be admitted to the Hurley Medical Center Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (or NICU as it is commonly known) for special care and attention. Our specially trained doctors and nurses provide support in every aspect of newborn care and parenting techniques.

Right now you may feel worried, frightened, confused, or generally overwhelmed. It is our hope to relieve some of your fears. It is important for parents to understand that babies in the NICU are not like other patients; they have special needs that will require the exact care found only in a designated Level III NICU. Please keep in mind that these are general statements and all may not necessarily apply to your child.

We are a patient/family centered care unit. We know how stressful hospitalization can be for you and your family. Our goal is to make sure that your child’s medical and developmental needs are met by including you in the decision-making process regarding your child’s treatment.

What Is Patient Family Centered Care?

It is the belief that health care providers, patients, and their families are partners; working together to best meet the needs of the infant. Patient and family knowledge, values, beliefs, and cultural backgrounds are incorporated into the planning and delivery of care.

Patient Safety Is Our #1 Priority

NICU is a locked unit for the safety and security of your baby. To gain entry, please have your baby’s name and ID number when calling to enter or when calling to speak with your baby’s nurse. Also, to ensure your baby’s privacy, do not give out this security number. We encourage each mother to designate one support person who will wear the matching ID band. This person will be given information regarding all aspects of your baby's care.


  • Parent Hours

    Our unit is open 24 hours per day for visitation by mom and her identified support person. It may be necessary at times to restrict visits during critical procedures or emergencies. Also, we ask that you do not enter the NICU wearing any scented lotions, perfume, baby oil, or aftershave.

    No more than two adult caregivers are allowed at the bedside.

  • First Things First: Infection Prevention

    Please remember that this is an intensive care unit and that these babies are fragile.

    • Handwashing is the most important way to help prevent the spread of infection.
    • A three-minute scrub up to the elbows must be done every time you enter the NICU.
    • Use the sinks to wash or the sanitizer in between touching items (cell phones, purses, bedside, etc.) and your baby.
  • Directions to Hurley Medical Center
  • Parking & Safety

    Patients and Visitor Parking
    Free parking for patients and visitors is available in front of the lobby. Enter the parking lot from Sixth Ave and Grand Traverse.

    Valet Parking
    Valet parking service is available at the medical center’s main lobby entrance on Monday through Friday from 6 am to 8 pm and Saturday from 6 am until 3:30 pm. Valet parking is closed on Sunday. There is a flat rate of $4.00 for this service.

    Emergency Department Parking
    Emergency department parking is located in the right-hand side lot off Sixth Ave next to the emergency entrances.

    Safety and Security
    Hurley Medical Center is committed to providing a safe and secure environment for patients, visitors, and staff. Hurley’s Public Safety department has professionally trained officers ready to serve your needs. Officers are also stationed at the emergency department entrance. Public Safety can be reached at 810-262-9121.

  • Cafeteria

    The cafeteria is located near the Charles White Conference Center in the first-floor West Lobby.

    Open Monday through Friday

    • Breakfast: 6:30am - 9:30am
    • Lunch: 10:30am - 2:30pm
    • Dinner: 4:30pm - 7:00pm

    Open Saturday and Sunday

    • Breakfast: 6:30am - 9:30am
    • Lunch: 10:30am - 2:00pm
    • Dinner: 4:30pm - 7:00pm

    Vending machines are available 24/7 by the cafeteria entrance and in other locations throughout the medical center.

  • Gift Shop

    The Lobby Gift Shop in our main lobby has an excellent assortment of gifts to choose from.


    • Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday: 10:00am - 11:45pm
    • Wednesday: 10:00am - 8:00pm
    • Saturday: 10:00am - 3:30pm
    • Sunday: Open with volunteer availability

  • The Power to Make It Happen

    The NICU is located on the second floor of Hurley Medical Center’s East Tower. It is a regional center serving Genesee, Lapeer, and Shiawassee counties. Hurley’s NICU is a designated Level III NICU, meaning it has met strict national standards set by the American Academy of Pediatrics. Hurley Medical Center has the region’s only Level III NICU, providing mid-Michigan’s highest level of technology and skill.

    A Skilled Team of Professionals
    A skilled medical team cares for your baby. The team includes neonatologists, clinical practitioners, registered nurses, respiratory therapists, nutritionists, and other medical professionals. The neonatologist is responsible for all medical treatment. The nursing staff includes nurse practitioners and registered nurses that have special training in the care of sick newborns. Other members of the NICU include people from the laboratory or radiology (X-ray). Respiratory therapists set up and check machines that aid breathing. Speech therapists help babies learn how to suck. Occupational therapists help babies develop their feeding coordination along with their muscle control. Other doctors are called, if needed, for special problems.

    You play a key role in the care of your baby. You are strongly encouraged to talk to your infant, even if he or she is too sick to hold and cuddle.

    By working together, we will ensure that your baby receives the best care available.

  • Overnight Room

    Special circumstances or long-distance travel may require assistance so that you can remain close to your baby. If a brief stay is necessary, please ask about the Parents Sleep Room or the Overnight Room located close to the NICU.

  • Health Insurance

    Please add your baby to your health insurance plan as soon as possible. Most health insurance plans (such as Blue Cross, Medicaid) do not automatically cover newborns. They require that the parents apply. Remember to use your baby’s birth date as the coverage “effective date”. If your baby needs additional coverage, you may contact our NICU Social Worker (810-262-6612), case manager (810-262-6083) and/or the Hurley Credit Office (810-262-9260).

During Your Stay

  • Communication - Who to Talk to and When

    Important Phone Numbers

    Your baby’s doctor, a neonatologist, a specialist in the care of newborns, will be glad to speak with you during his or her daily family-centered bedside rounds. The doctor will come to your hospital room or call you at home if there are any serious changes or emergencies. Always leave a phone number where you can be reached.

    What Are Family Centered Rounds?

    Every morning the doctors, nurses, and other members of the team meet to discuss your infant’s plan of care.

    You and your baby are the most important members of the healthcare team and are encouraged and supported in participating in care and decision-making at the level you choose, just listening is okay as well.

    When and Where Do Rounds Happen?

    Family-centered rounds happen daily between 9 am-12 pm at your baby’s bedside.

    Why Are There So Many Doctors Present During Rounds?

    Hurley Medical Center is a teaching hospital. The “attending” doctor is your child’s main doctor and is responsible for supervising your child’s care. The residents and nurse practitioners work under the supervision of your attending doctor as they use their knowledge and skills to care for your child.

    During rounds, the attending doctor teaches residents, interns, and medical students about diagnosing and treating medical conditions, working together with team members to meet the infant’s needs, and speaking with families about your infant’s healthcare.

    What Is Discussed at Rounds?

    The discussion at rounds will be about your infant’s current condition and progress. They will talk about the daily plan of care, overnight issues or changes, new lab/test results, and discharge plans and goals.

    The attending doctor will make the final decision on the plan of care and will ask if you agree.

    What Is Your Role During Rounds?

    • Write down questions and notes before and during rounds
    • Listen and add to the medical information presented to you
    • Ask questions to clearly understand the information and decisions being made
    • Share with the team what you think will help your child
    • MyChart is available to all families to access their infant’s medical records. If interested, please ask your nurse for more information.


    While you are in the hospital you may overhear information about another patient. Keeping patient information confidential is very important to us. We ask you to help maintain privacy for every family. If you hear something about another infant please keep that information private. Please do not ask staff questions about another patient at Hurley. We welcome your involvement as a part of the team that cares for your infant.

    Please remember, however, there are many babies who need intensive care in NICU. If you need to speak to a neonatologist and have been unable to do so while you are here, contact the nurse caring for your infant, the charge nurses, or the nurse manager. You will need to specify the neonatologist with whom you wish to speak and suggest times when you will be available.

    To ensure privacy and confidentiality, you will receive an ID band for your baby. You must use the ID number when calling the NICU to check on your child’s condition. Please do not share this ID with others, as this is your privacy number.

  • Daily Progress

    We would like you to be involved in the daily progress of your baby’s weighings, feedings, medications, etc. Please call Hurley’s NICU at 810-262-9181 (29181 within Hurley) to speak to your baby’s nurse. Please have the last name of the infant’s mother and patient ID number ready when calling for information.

    To ensure confidentiality, we can only give information to the infant’s mother, father, or designated support person. It is best to coordinate calls with your support person so you can effectively share information with friends and family.

  • Smile

    Feel free to bring cameras and take pictures of your baby. Showing photos is a good way to share your child’s growth with relatives and friends. Because we respect each infant and family’s privacy, it is important that you take photos of your child only. Please assure you do not include other infants in the background.

    NicView is an innovative small camera system placed at designated bed spaces in the NICU and allows parents, family, and friends to view their infant in real-time, 24/7, through a secure online portal. This service helps families develop that bond with their preemie or hospitalized infant even when they can’t be in the NICU with them. NicView can add peace of mind and provide reassurance when you can’t be at the bedside. For more information about NicView talk to your baby’s nurse and read NicView Parent Information (PDF)

  • Power of Touch

    Your baby needs you now, even though others are providing special medical care. He or she already knows your voice and will grow to recognize your touch. It is important to hold your baby once he or she is in stable condition. Talk with your child’s nurse to determine how you can be actively involved in your infant’s care.

    Don’t worry if your baby is not in the same spot each time you visit. Beds may be moved to make the best use of space and equipment.

    Please verify the infant’s ID number with the nurse each visit before providing care or taking photos.

  • Feeding

    While in the NICU infants are kept on a feeding schedule. They may be fed within 30 minutes of their scheduled feeding time. Very small babies may need a feeding tube because they are unable to coordinate sucking, swallowing, and breathing. As they grow, they will begin to take formula from a bottle or breast. Usually this happens when the child is around 34 to 35 weeks of gestation and is stable.

    It is important to your baby that you are present at feeding times whenever possible. If you coordinate with your infant’s nurse, we can work to ensure that you provide your child’s feedings. Nurses will help you breast or bottle feed your baby, as needed.

    How to Bottle Feed Your Baby: Paced Bottle Feeding (Video)

  • Breastfeeding

    At Hurley Medical Center’s NICU, we believe that a mother’s milk is the best nutrition for ill or premature infants. We ask that every mother breastfeed or pump for their babies for at least the time that they are in the Neonatal Intensive Care unit when medically able. All babies need their mother’s milk, but preemies and infants who are ill may benefit even more from it. Preemies who are fed their mother’s milk during their NICU stay tend to have:

    • Less life-threatening infections and feeding problems and a shorter hospital stay
    • Better brain development and higher IQs when they are older
    • Lower risk of having to return to the hospital after they go home.

    Mother’s milk has more than 600 biological factors that contribute to better health in babies. It contains brain-boosting and nutritious fats, sugar, and protein to jumpstart growth, and hormones that help the baby’s intestines.

    If you plan to breastfeed, please tell your baby’s nurse as soon as possible. Even if your baby may not be able to nurse from the breast right away, you can use a breast pump to provide milk for your baby.

    If you don’t know how to use a breast pump, your nurse can show you. When your baby begins to take feedings by mouth, remind the nurse that you plan to breastfeed to ensure successful nursing can be started. There is a special room in the NICU for pumping in comfort and privacy. Pumping at the bedside and kangaroo care (skin-to-skin) when your infant is stable enough are also highly encouraged and supported.

    A team of lactation consultants and nurses are available to assist with breastfeeding. Call the lactation consultant program at 810-262-9480 or speak with your baby’s nurse for more assistance. Hurley looks forward to helping you be successful at giving your baby the best start possible.

    Breastfeeding Resources

    Pumping Information

  • Guarding Against Infections

    Keeping you informed to help stop the spread of infection within the hospital.

    Babies can get infections much easier and faster than adults. These infections can be very serious and even deadly. You can help by:

    • Performing a three-minute scrub up to the elbows every time you enter the NICU.
    • Removing wristwatches, bracelets, or rings with stones before entering the unit.
    • Using the sinks to wash or the sanitizer in between touching items (cell phones, purses, bedside, etc.) and your baby.
    • Placing a blanket between you and your infant while holding them at the bedside.
    • Putting your purse, camera, or other belongings in a gray bedside bin and not on the floor, counter, or baby’s bed. This space is used for your infant’s supplies.
    • Following any other special directions.

    Additional ways to help prevent infection:

    • Make sure you and all visitors are 100% healthy. Persons with a temperature, cough, or runny nose should not visit. If a parent has a cough or runny nose, please see a healthcare provider before visiting - they will provide a protective barrier, such as a mask to wear.
    • Thousands of germs can survive under and around fingernails, especially artificial nails. It is important to clean under nails during scrubbing. Please do not wear acrylic nails. It is important to make sure your skin and nails are clean and healthy.
    • We encourage minimal jewelry and no bracelets/watches.
    • We encourage you to be involved with care and sometimes we ask that you use gloves.
    • Make sure you clean your hands before and after contact with body fluids, diapers, and respiratory care.
    • Some preemies and other infants will have central lines. These are invasive, as they are a direct line to the main bloodstream. It is extremely important that these lines are protected from bacteria.
    • Make sure not to touch other infants’ bedsides or items. Every infant’s situation is unique to how their care is being performed.
    • Please stay in your own infant’s area.
    • Speak up! We encourage you to be an advocate for your infant.
    • All healthcare providers must clean their hands when providing care to your infant.
    • You may ask healthcare providers if they have cleaned their hands before coming in contact with your baby.
    • Breast Milk contains many important antibodies that can protect your baby from bacterial and viral infections.
    • Breast milk will promote and strengthen your baby’s immune system. This is especially important for preemies and very sick infants.
    • MRSA Info for NICU Parents from Infection Control (PDF)

  • Healing and Weight Gain

    Infants in the NICU require specialized care for optimal healing and weight gain. This is accomplished mostly when sleeping. If you visit between feedings and your baby is asleep, please try to not wake him or her up until their next “care time”. If you are not sure what this is or when, please ask your nurse. Also, help us keep the unit quiet by lowering your voice, silencing your cell phone, and keeping the lights dimmed.

  • Newborn Specific Tests

    Before your baby is discharged, we will perform basic tests such as the Newborn Screen, Hearing Screen, CCHD, and Angle Tolerance test if needed. Please see the resources below. If you have any questions or need additional information, please ask your nurse.

    Newborn Screening for CCHD

    Michigan Newborn Screening

    Newborn Hearing Screen

    After Newborn Screening - Your Baby’s Blood Spots

  • Infant Pain Management

    Newborn infants, especially when born early, often go through procedures that may be painful, but vital to their care. Seeing your baby have a painful procedure done can be stressful to you too. The nurses and doctors at Hurley Medical Center want to help ease your baby’s pain. They would also like to attend to other concerns you may have.

    Signs That Your Baby May Be Experiencing Pain

    • Frowning/ grunting, change in facial expression
    • High-pitched crying, fussiness
    • Shaking of chin, squinting of eyes or brows
    • Flushed/red skin color, sweating
    • Increased heart rate, change in breathing
    • Spread fingers/tight fists
    • Withdrawn or unresponsive behavior
    • Change in sleep pattern

    What to Expect From Us
    We will use a pain scale (NIPS) to give your baby’s pain a number. We will listen and do everything possible to decrease your baby’s pain. We will try to keep a calm, quiet setting to help reduce extra stress. We will use:

    • Numbing creams
    • Sugar water
    • Warm packs
    • Hands-on comfort (stroking, patting, rocking, swaddling)
    • Pacifiers during procedures
    • Pain medication when able

    Why Treat Pain?

    • Pain causes stress
    • Untreated pain slows growth and development
    • Untreated pain can cause eating and sleeping problems
    • Untreated pain can get in the way of infant-family interactions

    How Can You Help?
    Parents, you will be your baby’s primary caregiver when he or she goes home. Therefore, it would help to be involved in your baby’s care from the start.

    • You can comfort your baby by:
    • Cuddling
    • Swaddling
    • Talking/touching your baby
    • Reading or singing to your baby
    • Providing safety and comfort
    • Letting your baby sleep and rest

    If you have questions or concerns about your baby’s pain management care, please contact your baby’s nurse, doctor, or the nurse manager at 810-262-9181.

  • Medical Terms You May Need to Know
    • Antibiotics: medications that destroy bacteria (germs).
    • Apgar Score: a method to assess how well a baby is doing in the early moments of life. The average score is 7-8 at one minute of life or 9 at five minutes of life.
    • Apnea: a period of time when a premature baby “forgets” to breathe due to immature brain function or lung problems.
    • Aspiration: inhaling a foreign substance such as milk, meconium, or stomach juices into the windpipe and lungs.
    • Bagging: pumping air into the lungs by squeezing a bag connected to a mask on the baby’s face or through an endotracheal tube in the windpipe. This is done to breathe for the infant temporarily.
    • Bilirubin Lights: fluorescent lights that are placed over the baby to decrease jaundice (please see jaundice). Eye pads are placed over the baby’s eyes to protect them from light injury. Sometimes a light blanket is wrapped around the baby instead.
    • Blood Gas: a blood sample to measure how well the baby’s lungs are working.
    • Bradycardia: a slower than normal heart rate, usually less than 100 beats per minute in an infant.
    • Broviac: a catheter (tube) inserted into a large vein by a physician. This may be necessary for long-term care to deliver fluids, blood, and medications in large volume or concentration.
    • Cardiorespiratory Monitor: electronic equipment that measures heartbeat and breathing rate continuously.
    • Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP): A machine supporting expansion of the airways (lungs) through small prongs in the nose. This does not breathe for the infant but assists to support their breathing.
    • Echo: diagnostic test using sound waves to scan internal organs and help check for abnormalities.
    • Electroencephalogram (EEG): a brain wave tracing that measures brain wave activity.
    • Endotracheal Tube (ET Tube): a tube that is passed into the baby’s windpipe to assist breathing.
    • Gavage: a feeding method. A soft plastic tube that is passed through the baby’s nose or mouth into the stomach. Milk can then flow into the stomach by gravity. This method is used until the baby is strong enough to suck.
    • Gestational Age: a baby’s age in weeks counted from the beginning of pregnancy (conception) to delivery. A term gestation is 38-42 weeks.
    • Hyperalimentation (Hyperal or TPN): a special solution of sugar, protein, fats, minerals, and vitamins essential to growth, given by IV.
    • Incubator/Isolette: An enclosed plastic crib for precise control of air temperature.
    • Intravenous Catheter (IV): a tube inserted into a vein to give fluids, blood, or medications.
    • Jaundice: a yellow skin coloring common in newborns due to an increase in bilirubin, a normal byproduct from the breakdown of red blood cells. (Please see bilirubin lights).
    • Lipid: a fatty solution given by IV to provide additional calories needed for growth.
    • Meconium: dark green bowel movements passed during the first few days of life.
    • One Touch: a bedside test to determine the amount of sugar present in the blood.
    • Oximeter: a monitor used to check the amount of oxygen in red blood cells. It also monitors continuous heart rate.
    • Per-Q-Cath (PICC): A catheter (tube) inserted into a large vein by a trained nurse. This may be necessary for long-term care to deliver fluids, blood, or medications in large volume or concentration.
    • Phototherapy: please see bilirubin lights.
    • Pneumonia: infection of the lungs.
    • Radiant Warmer: open bed with an overhead heater to keep the baby warm.
    • Respirator: please see ventilator.
    • Septic Work Up: various tests or samples obtained from the baby to help rule out specific forms of infection.
    • Surfactant: a medication placed into the baby’s lungs to promote and assist breathing.
    • Umbilical Artery Catheter (UAC): a catheter (tube) placed by a physician into the baby’s umbilical artery. It is used to administer IV fluids, get blood samples, and obtain a constant blood pressure.
    • Umbilical Venous Catheter (UVC): a catheter (tube) placed by a physician into the baby’s umbilical vein. It is used to administer IV fluids, blood, and medications.
    • Ventilator: a machine that delivers oxygen and pressure to breathe for the infant until they are able to breathe on their own.
  • Medical Conditions
  • Parent Support
  • Developmental Milestones
  • Vaccine Information
  • NICU Safe Sleep Video

Preparing for Discharge

  • Safe Sleep

    Reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) and other sleep-related causes of infant death.

    What Is SIDS?

    SIDS is the sudden, unexpected death, that doesn't have a known cause even after a full investigation, of a baby between 1 month and 1 year of age. About half of the sudden, unexpected infant deaths that occur in the United States each year are from SIDS.

    What Are Other Sleep-Related Causes of Infant Death?

    • Accidental suffocation: when something, such as a pillow, or someone covers the baby’s face and nose, blocking the ability to breathe.
    • Entrapment: when the baby gets trapped between two objects, such as a mattress and a wall, and can’t breathe.
    • Strangulation: when something presses on or wraps around the baby’s neck, blocking the baby’s airway.

    What Can I Do to Lower My Baby’s Risk of SIDS and Other Sleep-Related Causes of Death?

    • Always place the baby on his or her back to sleep, for naps and at night.
    • Use a firm and flat sleep surface, such as a mattress in a safety-approved crib, covered by a fitted sheet with no other bedding or soft items in the sleep area.
    • Breastfeed your baby to reduce the risk of SIDS
    • Keep the baby in your room close to your bed, but on a separate surface designed for infants, ideally for the baby’s first year.
    • Think about giving your baby a pacifier for naps and nighttime sleep to reduce the risk of SIDS.
    • Give your baby plenty of tummy time when he or she is awake and someone is watching.
    • Do not put soft objects, toys, crib bumpers, or loose bedding under the baby, over the baby, or anywhere in the baby’s sleep area.
    • Do not smoke during pregnancy and do not smoke or allow smoking around your baby or in your baby’s environment
    • Avoid smoking, drinking alcohol, using marijuana, and illegal drugs during pregnancy and after the baby is born.
    • Do not let your baby get too hot during sleep.

    Answers to Common Questions About SIDS and Other Sleep-Related Causes of Infant Death

    Q: What is the best way to reduce a baby’s risk for SIDS?
    A: Always place the baby on his or her back to sleep in a separate sleep area, designed for a baby, with no soft objects, toys, or loose bedding.

    Q: Will my baby choke if placed on the back to sleep?
    A: No. Babies naturally swallow or cough up fluids - it's a reflex. Babies clear fluids better when sleeping on their backs because of the location of the opening to the lungs in relation to the opening to the stomach.

    Q: What if I fall asleep while feeding my baby?
    A: Any time you fall asleep while holding or feeding your baby, he or she is at risk for SIDS, suffocation, or sleep-related causes of death or injury. Couches and armchairs can be very dangerous for babies when shared with an adult who then falls asleep. Before you start feeding your baby, think about how tired you are.

  • Safe Sleep Practices

    The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) makes the following recommendations for all infants:

    • Always place the infant on his/her back for all naps and night sleep.
    • Always make sure that the infant sleeps alone in the crib, bassinet, or playpen. The infant should sleep in the same room as parents, but not in the same bed (room-sharing without bed-sharing).
    • Always place infant on a firm mattress in a safety-approved crib/bassinet or playpen.
    • No quilts, comforters, pillows, bumper pads, and other fluffy or loose bedding should be in infants’ crib or bassinet.
    • No toys, stuffed animals, and loose items should be in infants’ crib or bassinet.
    • Never allow infant to sleep on a sofa, adult or youth bed, or on a waterbed. If there is no bed available, the floor may be the safest place for the baby to sleep.
    • Make sure infant’s face and head remain uncovered at all times during sleep.
    • Make sure that everyone who cares for the infant knows about safe sleep.
    • Keep the room temperature no warmer than 75°F.
    • If a bassinet is being used, make sure to change to a crib once the infant can roll over, or when he/she is too big for the bassinet.
    • Don’t allow anyone to smoke around the baby.
    • Provide supervised “Tummy Time” to help with head, shoulder, and muscle development and to minimize the possibility of developing flattened areas of the head.
  • Safe Sleep Video
  • Hints for Calming a Fussy Baby

    Crying is how your baby communicates. It is common for babies to have a “fussy” period, often in the evening. Babies cry on average for 2 hours and 15 mins per day. This usually goes away when the baby is 10-12 weeks old. Your usual comforting techniques may not always work. Also keep in mind that some babies cry from overstimulation. Here are some other comforting techniques to try. Combine them to create your own patterns. Try each for 15 minutes. If it doesn’t work, change to a new position.

    Rhythmic Motions

    • Walk around
    • Sway back and forth while standing
    • Sit in a rocking chair to rock the baby
    • Use an infant swing

    Touch and Massage

    • Try a pattern of firmly patting the back twice and bottom once in an alternating rhythm.
    • Stroke the infant’s back from the neck down to the bottom.
    • In a warm room, lay your baby down on a firm surface. Massage the abdomen in clockwise circles to help relieve gas, Then press knees into the abdomen to help push out the gas.


    • Hold baby face down, lying over your forearm
    • Hold baby seated in your hand with his back to your chest so that they are facing forward, leaning over your other forearm
    • Hold baby high over your shoulder so they are looking down your back
    • Cradle baby in your arms, tummy to tummy with you


    • Try a newborn-size pacifier
    • Help baby suck his own finger or thumb

    Soothing Sounds

    • Speak reassuring words in a low, soft voice
    • Play music - try different types
    • Try rhythmic sounds such as a dishwasher, vacuum cleaner, or fan
    • Hum and/or sing songs
    • Try tapes or CDs that have sounds of mother’s heartbeats i.e “baby go to sleep”

    Any person can reach a “breaking point” when they can’t seem to quiet their baby, especially when they aren't getting enough sleep and support. If you feel you're at that point, put the baby in a safe place and take a break.

  • Car Seat Safety

    Be Prepared!
    Pick the right car seat and install it three weeks before your due date, proper use is critical.

    Make Sure You:

    • Choose a seat based on the size of your car and your child’s age and size.
    • Read the manufacturer’s instructions and check your vehicle’s owner manual for proper use and installation.
    • Install using the seat belt or the LATCH system (detailed in vehicle owner’s manual). NEVER both.
    • Make sure the safety seat’s harness fits snugly over the child's shoulders.

    Rear Facing Seats:

    • Shoulder harnesses should be at or just BELOW the shoulder.

    Forward Facing Seats:

    • Shoulder harnesses should be at-or-just ABOVE the shoulder.
    • Tether straps reduce head injury. If your seat is equipped with a tether, use the owner's manual to install.
    • Speak to your car insurance provider if your safety seat has been in a car crash, they should not be re-used.

    Age-Related Guidelines

    • Birth to 12 Months: Babies are so vulnerable at this age, your baby’s head and neck are not strong enough to hold their head up. To protect the baby's airway, the car seat needs to be placed at the right angle when they are in it. KEEP THE CHEST CLIP HIGH ON THE CHEST at least up to the armpit level. This secures the baby into the seat.
    • 1-3 Years: Keep your child rear-facing as long as possible. Rear-facing is most safe.
    • 4-7 Years: It’s safest to stay in a car seat restraint, with a back. Keeping kids in a forward-facing car seat until their ears are taller than the seat, or the shoulder harness is lower than the shoulders is key to prevent injuries.
    • 8-12 Years: Keep your child in a booster seat until a seat belt fits them safely. For a seat belt to fit properly the lap belt must lie snugly across the upper thighs, not the stomach. The shoulder belt should lie snug across the shoulder and chest and not across the neck or face. Your child should still rise in the back seat because it is safer.

    Buckle Up! It’s the Law

    • Car seats are the law and vital to preventing injury.
    • Height and weight requirements are on the car seat, and use the manual too!
    • Make sure your kiddo rides in the back seat until 12 years old.
    • If you are pregnant be sure to wear your seatbelt low on your hips to protect you and your unborn child.
    • To protect your upper body, use the upper, shoulder strap of your seatbelt.
    • Use of the lower belt only can cause dire injuries if you or a loved one is in a crash.

    Did You Know?

    • You can prevent injuries and deaths from motor vehicle crashes, a leading cause of death for children.
    • Child seats protect against death, injury, and even hospital stays. Car seats are the simplest way to keep your kids safe on our roads and highways.

    Michigan’s Child Passenger Safety Law

    • Children younger than four must ride in a car seat in the rear seat of the vehicle. If all available rear seats are occupied by children under four, then a child under four may only ride in a car seat in the front seat. (Only if the airbag is off may a child ride in front.)
    • Children must be properly buckled in a car seat or booster seat until they are eight years old or 4 ft. 9 in. tall, whichever comes first.

    For More Information
    For information on child seat recalls, child seat inspection locations, ways to keep kids safe in and around cars, buying tips for safe cars, car seat details, and ease of use ratings, check the following resources:

  • Car Seat Inspections
  • Second Hand Smoke
  • Discharge Survey
    Please complete the NICU Discharge Survey
  • How to Give a Bath
  • When to Call Your Baby’s Doctor
    • If infant is eating poorly or refusing to eat
    • Patches of white in baby’s mouth
    • Temperature of 100°F or greater or 97°F or less
    • Repeated vomiting
    • Crying excessively with no known cause
    • An unusual or severe rash
    • Frequent or excessive bowel movements with excess fluid, mucous, or foul odor
    • If the baby has less than six wet diapers per day and/or no bowel movement for two days
    • Extreme sleepiness or floppy arms and/or legs
    • Congested cough, running eyes or nose
    • Drainage or excessive bleeding from a circumcision
  • When to Call 911
    • A sudden change in breathing pattern and/or severe difficulty in breathing
    • If infant stops breathing
    • Blue lips or skin
    • Unable to wake infant
  • Infant CPR Video