The day you have waited for has finally come, and you're ready to take your baby home. Remember that it is normal to feel anxious about leaving the familiarity of the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). Before you leave, feel free to ask as many questions as you need to about caring for your baby. While it is common to be nervous, it's important for you to feel as comfortable as possible.
Babies who have been in the NICU should be followed up by a pediatrician who is well informed about the baby's NICU history and who can monitor the baby's medical and developmental needs. Some babies in NICUs are referred to early intervention programs either by NICU staff, their follow-up providers, or parents themselves. These are free programs that offer a range of services to children under 3 years of age who have or are at risk for developmental problems. Many hospitals also provide various follow-up programs to assess how babies who have been in the NICU are doing. Speak to your baby's health care team to learn more about these resources.
You will always remember this difficult and special time in the NICU with your child. Now it's time to create new and beautiful experiences and memories, together, at home, where your baby belongs.
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© 2009 March of Dimes Foundation. All rights reserved. The March of Dimes is a not-for-profit organization recognized as tax-exempt under Internal Revenue Code section 501(c)(3). Our mission is to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth, and infant mortality.