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Parent Education

Who's Who and What They Do in the NICU


  • Neonatologist: A pediatrician who, with additional specialty training, specializes in the care of sick and premature newborns.

  • Pediatric Hospitalist: A pediatrician who works with the Neonatologist in caring for sick and premature newborns.

  • Pediatric resident: A doctor currently receiving special training to become a pediatrician.

  • Pediatric intern: A doctor in the first year of training following graduation from medical school.


  • Nurse manager: A registered nurse who oversees all unit operations.

  • Neonatal nurse practitioner: A registered nurse who has received additional specialized training to perform specific procedures and develop patient-focused care plans.

  • Charge Nurse: A registered nurse who assists the nurse manager in overseeing unit operations.

  • Neonatal nurse: A registered nurse who specializes in the care of sick and premature newborns in the NICU.

  • Discharge coordinator/Clinical nurse specialist: A registered nurse who assists with patient education and preparations for parents to take their baby home. She or he also helps with the transfer of babies to and from regional nurseries.

Health Care Support Staff

Family Support

  • Respiratory therapist: A health team member with special knowledge of breathing problems, treatment, and equipment.

  • Radiology technician: A health team member who takes medical images of your baby. This may be done in the NICU or in the radiology department.

  • Nutritionist: A health team member with special training and knowledge in the nutrition and growth of premature babies.

  • Occupational, Physical, and Speech therapists: Health team members with special training in the feeding, movement and development of babies.

  • Social Worker: A health team member trained to help families cope with problems related to their baby’s hospitalization.

  • Volunteers: Specially trained hospital workers who hold babies who need some extra TLC when parents can't be there.

  • Chaplain: Individuals are also available to families for spiritual support or prayer – please ask your social worker to help arrange for this service.

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