Newborn Care

If you are a first-time parent, it’s important to prepare yourself for a smooth transition to family life.

We run a free group session to help you:

  • ease into parenting and prepares you for this new phase in your life
  • strengthen relationships and maintain intimacy at this precious and challenging time
  • build confidence about responding to your baby’s needs
  • create a support network

To attend a session, please contact Relationship Australia Canberra and Region on 02 6122 7100.

For more information, please contact the Queen Elizabeth II Family Centre on 02 6205 2311 or read the Course Flyer.

The Newborn and Parent Support Service

The Newborn and Parent Support Service (NAPSS) provides a service for babies and their families who no longer need hospital care but still require some nursing care, support and advice at home.

NAPPS consists of a team of neonatal nurses and midwives, clinical nurse coordinators, neonatologists, paediatricians, physiotherapists, social workers and other health professionals.

The service provides home visit care from Monday to Saturday, as well as 24-hour telephone support.

Please read the NAPSS Brochure for more information.

Pregnancy Education

We run a Healthy Pregnancy Information Group Session for women who are less than 14 weeks pregnant.

These sessions focus on early pregnancy issues and concerns, including nutrition, self-care, care options and booking processes.

You must attend a Healthy Pregnancy session before booking into the Balancing Bellies classes.

You can also book into ‘Pregnancy to Parenting’ sessions covering a range of maternity topics, including late pregnancy, labour, breastfeeding and baby care.

To make a booking, please call 02 5124 7625.


We offer group breastfeeding sessions with a lactation consultant for women with a complex breastfeeding history or who have concerns and questions that are not covered in the ‘Pregnancy to Parenting’ sessions.

These sessions are held at the CHWC and Gungahlin and Tuggeranong Child and Family Centres. One on one sessions are also available.

For more information, please call 02 5124 7625.

More information on breastfeeding is available here.

Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU)

The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) is part of a larger network of Intensive Care Units across Australia. It consists of 20 intensive care beds and 14 Special Care Nursery (SCN) beds and admits up to 700 patients per year.

The NICU and SCN are recognised family and baby friendly environments. It’s important for us to provide the best possible care for babies and their families.

Family centred care

Family centred care means:

  • you are always welcome at your baby’s bedside
  • our staff take every opportunity to help you bond and care for your baby
  • you are encouraged to participate in bedside rounds
  • you are encouraged to learn about your baby
  • you are a part of your baby’s treating team
  • our staff teach you how to read your baby’s behaviour and respond appropriately

Family centred rounds give you the opportunity to speak with your baby’s medical team and participate in their healthcare. If you have any questions about your baby’s care or anything said during rounds, please talk to your baby’s nurse.

The medical staff also participate in rounds every morning to discuss your baby’s status and progress. We encourage you to be at your baby’s bedside during these rounds and ask any brief questions about their condition. Please leave more complex questions for individual meetings with your doctor.

Family Meetings are held to discuss your baby’s condition, progress and plan of care in more detail.

If you need a family meeting, your nurse can make the arrangements.

We encourage you not to wait until a family meeting to ask questions about your baby’s care—your doctor is available to speak with at any time.


When a baby starts to cry, and you feel your emotions rise, it’s time to take a break. Try using calming exercises or put your baby down, close your eyes and take long, deep breaths.

Keep your baby monitor close and check in on your baby with a quick visit evert 10 to 15 minutes or until you feel calm enough to pick them up.

If this doesn’t work, reach out and call someone you feel comfortable talking to.

You can also try using some of the relaxation methods below:

  • listen to music
  • take a warm bath
  • exercise
  • watch TV
  • continue with your usual routines
  • talk to someone
  • remember to laugh often
  • sleep when your baby sleeps

Contact the MACH Nursing Service through the Central Health Intake line on 02 5124 9977, speak to your GP or visit the Period of PURPLE Crying website.

After hours support

If you need after hours advice and support, please see the contact information below.

24 hour telephone advice and information service.

1800 022 222 (free call)

Confidential phone and online service for information, advice and counselling about pregnancy, childbirth and your baby’s first year.

1800 882 436 (free call)

Telephone service to speak with a Child and Family Health nurse about health issues in children aged five and below.

1800 637 337 (free call)

Telephone service to speak with a Child and Family Health nurse about health issues in infants and children aged five and below.

1300 227 464

Breastfeeding Helpline for support and information.

1800 686 268 (free call)



Page last updated on: 28 May 2019