Premature babies



If you have any reason to think that your labour may be starting early, get in touch with the delivery suite at once so that arrangements can be made.

Some babies need special care in hospital, sometimes on the ordinary postnatal ward, and on occasion in a neonatal unit (NNU), also known as a special care baby unit (SCBU) or neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). All of these services are provided in our Women's Centre at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital. Babies who may need special care include:

  • Babies who are born earlier than 34 weeks may need help breathing, feeding and keeping warm, and the earlier they are born, the more help they are likely to need.
  • Babies who are very small or who have life-threatening conditions, usually affecting their breathing, heart and circulation.
  • Babies born to diabetic mothers, or babies where the delivery has been very difficult, may need to be kept under close observation for a time.
  • Babies with very marked jaundice.

Contact telephone number: Neo-natal Unit: 0300 422 5529

Parents and professionals can access more information here at the website for the South West Neonatal Network


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