The 'Comfort Care for Families Program' is a volunteer service offered at Sunshine Hospital to families with babies in the Special Care Nursery who are undergoing treatment for Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS).
NAS is a treatable condition that may affect babies born to mothers who have been on a methadone program or used heroin or other opiates during their pregnancy.
Babies receiving treatment for NAS require expert medical and midwifery care. However, we recognize that the most important part of a baby's treatment is the close physical contact and love from their parents and other family members.
We also understand that life is busy. With other children and commitments, it's often difficult for parents to spend as much time with their baby as they would like.
The 'Comfort Care for Families Program' is coordinated by specialized staff and involves a small team of dedicated volunteers – many of whom are mothers and grandmothers themselves. All volunteers undergo a formal interview and police check to determine their suitability for participation in the program and undergo training.
Volunteers participating in the 'Comfort Care for Families Program' are trained to assist you and your family in the following ways:
Comfort and settle your baby under the guidance and supervision of Special Care Nursery staff when you're unable to be present. This may involve holding your baby when he or she is unsettled, rocking them gently to sleep, and generally helping to provide a soothing environment.
Provide companionship and support. Someone you can share a chat and a cup of coffee with if you wish.
Feeding your baby
Nappy or clothing changes
If you would like the 'Comfort Care for Families Program' to support you and your family in the care of your newborn in Special Care Nursery, please talk to one of our staff who will arrange for you to meet one of our volunteers.
For more information, please contact the Special Care Nursery on 8345 1711.
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