Babies from across the Thames Valley are cared for in the Neonatal Care Unit at the John Radcliffe Hospital. The unit has 56 cots, across intensive care and high and low dependency.

Dr Amit Gupta, Clinical Director, heads a team of 10 Doctors, Matrons and over 140 specially trained Neonatal nurses and medical staff who are working day and night to ensure that the babies receive the highest level of care.

The NCU provides expert, round-the-clock care for newborn babies who are ill or born prematurely. Oxford is the highest level (3) Centre of Excellence in Newborn Care.

Depending on your baby’s needs, they will be in intensive care, high dependancy or low dependancy. There may also be transitional care, which happens just before your baby is ready to go home  and gives you a chance to take care of your baby yourself in one of the Homeward Bound rooms at the JR NICU, but with the nurses nearby.

Your baby may need extra care when they are born, either because they were born prematurely or are unwell. Premature babies need extra help while their bodies catch up on the growth and development they missed in the uterus. For example, it’s harder for your baby to stay warm because they can’t regulate their own body temperature yet. A special cot (incubator) can help with this.

If your baby is too small, weak or immature to feed, they might receive fluids and a feeding mixture through a drip. Or they might need a tube that carries milk into their stomach. Premature babies also need extra monitoring, treatment and care. They could be vulnerable and can have complex health issues.

In the NCU, the nurses and doctors are always checking for the signs of any problems. They can treat your baby promptly if they need to. For more information on your baby's medical needs please speak to your nurse or doctor. 

Visit the NCU website for more information and links to all the leaflets available.

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