Women and Infant Services
Mom and Baby
Congratulations: You have safely brought your baby into the world! Now it's time to
recover from labor and delivery in our Mother Baby Unit (MBU). All postpartum/MBU
nurses at St. Mary Medical Center are educated and trained to care for
both you and your baby. This is particularly important, as you will be
rooming-in with your newborn. New mothers generally stay in MBU for 24
to 48 hours after a vaginal delivery and 72 hours after a cesarean section.
Upon discharge, your nurse will provide information about how to care
for yourself and your baby when you go home.
During the postpartum period, your nurse will reserve time especially for
you to answer questions about caring for your newborn and for yourself.
Your nurse cares for several other new mothers and babies as well, so
it is important that you take advantage of the time she has set aside
for you. Individual basic newborn care will be done at the bedside. The
nurses taking care of you and your baby will review feeding, diapering,
Interactive TV: While in the hospital, additional infant care education is available 24
hours a day on the St. Mary Interactive TV. It features free and continuous
programming on newborn care, maternal recovery from childbirth, and various
family topics. We have a video library that you may use while you are
here and also provide printed materials for you to take home. We encourage
you to watch the following education videos before you are discharged:
- Mother and New Baby Care – English
- Mother and New Baby Care - Spanish
- Breastfeeding techniques that work
- Formula and Bottle feeding
- One Foot at a time
Baby Friendly® Designation: St. Mary Medical Center is proud to be a designated Baby Friendly®
Hospital. Awarded by Baby Friendly USA, the coveted designation recognizes
the hospital’s efforts in 10 key areas, including breastfeeding,
rooming-in and skin-to-skin contact, all designed to increase breastfeeding
Achieving the Baby Friendly® designation required collaboration with
community leaders, physicians and staff, all with an eye towards healthier
babies. Research shows breastfeeding benefits babies by lowering the risk
for diabetes, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, ear infections, obesity, allergies,
asthma and pediatric cancers. Breastfeeding mothers are at a decreased
risk for female cancers, osteoporosis and postpartum depression.
The Baby Friendly® initiative encourages breastfeeding to heighten
health among babies and mothers. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends
exclusive breastfeeding for six months, followed by continued breastfeeding
as complimentary foods are introduced for one year or longer as mutually
desired by mother and infant.
Lactation Consultants: All nurses who will care for you received 20 hours of lactation education.
Certified lactation consultants support breastfeeding mothers inside the
hospital’s mother baby unit. Our lactation consultants are feeding
specialists, so they can help you with all your infant feeding needs,
even if you decide not to breastfeed. A lactation consultant will schedule
an appointment for you after discharge, if you will need or desire additional
support with breastfeeding.
Pacifiers and artificial nipples can interfere with feeding cues and make
it more difficult for babies to attach to the breast. It is recommended
breastfeeding mothers avoid artificial nipples and pacifiers until breastfeeding is easy.
Pediatrician Visit for Newborn: Within 24 hours of birth, your newborn will have a thorough examination
by a physician. Please inform the physician about helpful family medical
history. Feel free to ask about any concerns you may have. You can search
for a St. Mary affiliated pediatrician
Hepatitis B Vaccine: At St. Mary Medical Center, we follow the American Academy of Pediatrics
and Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines for the health of your
baby. The CDC recommends that your baby receive a Hepatitis B vaccine.
Mom will be asked to sign a consent form for this first birth dose of
Hepatitis B vaccine. This series of vaccines is given to prevent a virus
that causes serious liver disease. Other doses of the vaccine will be
given at your baby’s follow-up appointments. The first dose is essential
to prevent accidental exposure at birth. An immunization record will also
be given to mom upon baby’s discharge, which documents the Hepatitis
B injection. This immunization record will be an important document to
take with you to pediatrician appointments and for future immunizations.
Infant Security: To assure your newborn's safety and security, birth identification
bands will be placed on you and your infant immediately after birth. Never
leave your baby unattended. Never let anyone take your baby away from
your room unless they are wearing a hospital ID.
Newborn Screening Program: California law requires that all newborns be screened for early indicators
of a number of disorders. The tests provide one of the earliest opportunities
to detect disease before symptoms appear. Early diagnosis and treatment
can prevent the disabilities associated with these disorders. Only a few
drops of blood, taken from a baby's heel, are required to conduct
the screening. A detailed brochure about the program is available on the
maternity unit. If you would like to receive information about the program
in advance of your admission, talk with your baby's doctor or call
the California Newborn Screening Program at (510) 412-1502.
California law also requires that we perform a hearing-screening test on
every baby born at the hospital. The test is done while babies are asleep,
takes about 15 minutes, and is painless. A hearing screener will give
detailed information about the screening to you when you are in the hospital.
California also requires hospitals to screen every baby for Cardiac Heart
Disease before discharge. This test is also done while babies are asleep
and can take anywhere from 5 to 10 minutes and is painless.
Birth Certificate Services: We provide birth certificate services onsite to allow for easy completion
of important documents. We suggest you review the
Certificate of Live Birth Worksheet. This worksheet is provided during your hospital stay. Completion of the
worksheet is required prior to discharge. The Certificate of Live Birth
Worksheet is required for the county to issue your newborn with a birth
certificate and Social Security Number.
Newborn Photos: We offer photo packages to new families through
Mom365. This is in addition to the security photo taken of your baby once you
arrive in the MBU. Your baby’s photo is usually taken on day two
after delivery. Your photographer will inform you when she/he will be
ready to photograph your baby but is flexible knowing that babies need
to eat and have their diapers changed often. We ask that you please dress
your baby before your photo session and be ready when the photographer
arrives for your photo shoot. Instant viewing of your photo session is
made available with a custom online slide show posted to the Mom365 website
(protected with a unique password), thus enabling distant friends and
family members the opportunity to share the experience. Online viewing
and ordering is offered for two weeks to anyone you choose to share your
password; immediate in-hospital purchasing is also available.
Visitors in the Mother Baby Unit: Fathers/partners may visit 24 hours a day. For all other guests, we recommend
that they visit during visiting hours to allow our patients adequate rest.
Siblings may visit their new sibling as long as they are free from illness
(i.e. cold and flu) and have adult supervision. All visitors other than
siblings must be over the age of 16. The father of your baby, or a support
person, is welcome to stay overnight with you at the hospital. Partners:
24 hours a day
· Family and friends are welcome to visit from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
· Children (under age 16) are not allowed to visit.
· In addition to the mother, only one person (18 or older) may stay over.
· Children under the age of 12 must always be accompanied by an adult.
· No one with a cold, fever or sore throat should visit.
· A person who has been exposed to a communicable disease, such
as chicken pox, may not visit.
· We encourage handwashing each time someone enters and leaves the
room. It is necessary to help prevent the spread of germs and protect
the new mom and baby.
Car Seats: You must have a car seat for your infant before you can leave St. Mary
Medical Center. Please make sure you know how to operate your baby’s
car seat. While we do not require a car seat certificate from the police,
we strongly recommend that you make an appointment at your local police
department to make sure your car seat is fitted properly. For safety reasons,
car seats more than six years old should not be used.
Help after discharge: The Mommy and Me clinic provides a follow-up appointment within one to
two days after discharge to ensure a healthy transition after having a
baby. To speak with a certified lactation consultant regarding questions
or concerns with breastfeeding or to make a follow-up appointment, please
call (760) 217-5971.
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