Taking Your Baby Home
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has proposed discharge guidelines for high-risk newborn babies. The following general information about discharge is based on those guidelines. Consult your baby's physician for more specific information, based on the needs and medical condition of your child.
Generally, babies may be ready for discharge when they:
- are steadily gaining weight.
- have a stable temperature in a regular crib.
- can feed from a bottle or the breast without difficulty breathing or other problems.
- have mature and stable heart and breathing ability.
- any required immunizations or screening tests, including vision and hearing.
- checking for risks for additional complications.
- plans for treatment of on-going medical problems.
- basic baby care (baths, skin care, taking temperature, etc.).
- infant CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation).
- symptoms of illness.
- sleep positioning and car seat safety.
- use and care of special medical devices or equipment.
- giving medications.
- performing special procedures or care such as suctioning or special dressings.
If possible, request a parenting room to stay with your baby a night or two before discharge. This often helps parents feel more secure as they can assume total care with nurses and other care providers nearby. Ask about the hotline number or call center number if you need to call and ask questions once you take your baby home.
The information on this Web page is provided for educational purposes. You understand and agree that this information is not intended to be, and should not be used as, a substitute for medical treatment by a health care professional. You agree that Lucile Salter Packard Children's Hospital is not making a diagnosis of your condition or a recommendation about the course of treatment for your particular circumstances through the use of this Web page. You agree to be solely responsible for your use of this Web page and the information contained on this page. Lucile Salter Packard Children's Hospital, its officers, directors, employees, agents, and information providers shall not be liable for any damages you may suffer or cause through your use of this page even if advised of the possibility of such damages.