Before Your Stay
While you’re at Le Bonheur, you’ll be able to be with your child at all times. We’ll do everything we can to help make you and your child comfortable and feel at home.
What to Bring
- Things that make your child feel safe and at home in their hospital room: a favorite pillow or blanket, a treasured stuffed animal, games and anything else that reminds them of home.
- Any books, movies, game devices or other entertainment. We also offer movies, TV and a variety of gaming systems.
- Loose comfortable clothing for your child.
- Toiletries to help your family feel at home – basic toiletries are available at the hospital.
- Any laptops, cell phones, music players or other devices you’ll find useful, and chargers for your devices. Wireless internet (WiFi) is available for free throughout the hospital.
- If your child is in school, you may want to speak with their teachers before their hospital stay. We have teachers on-site to help keep them from falling behind on school work.
During Your Stay
The best thing you can do to help your child during your stay is to be with them and involved in their care. Every patient room at Le Bonheur, including the intensive care unit and neonatal intensive care unit, has space for up to two adults to sleep in the room. While your child is being cared for at Le Bonheur, you’ll be able to:
- Go with your child for tests and procedures.
- Participate as a member of the health care team by providing valuable details about your child during bedside handoff.
- Feed and bathe your child, put your child to bed at night, change diapers and remain by your child’s side.
- You can research your child’s diagnosis with the help of an educator through the Le Bonheur Club Family Resource Center.
Taking Care of Yourself
To take the best possible care of your child, you need to take care of yourself. Here are a few tips from our staff, volunteers and families:
- Get enough sleep and eat well while your child is in the hospital. Take breaks from your child’s room or the hospital when needed.
- Wash your hands frequently to avoid the spread of any illnesses to yourself or other family members.
- Seek help and support from family, friends and members or your community. Visitors are welcome in your child’s room anytime you want them. Siblings are also always welcome to visit.
- Consider keeping a journal to document your experience, track your child’s care, and write down questions or concerns for your child’s care team.
More Ways We Can Help
Le Bonheur offers a comprehensive guide (pdf) to your stay (Spanish version). You will receive it when you arrive in your child’s hospital room. Use it to discover hospital amenities, learn about the staff caring for your child, and to write down any notes or questions you may have during your stay. It is yours to keep. Le Bonheur also offers a floor-by-floor map (pdf) of the hospital to help you find your way.
Our hope is that your child’s stay with us exceeds your expectations. However, if you have questions or concerns, please speak with your child’s nurse first. If there is a problem that is not being resolved, then you may ask to speak with the nursing leader on your floor or unit, or the Le Bonheur patient advocate. Our patient advocate serves as a liaison between the staff and families, and can assist in problem resolution. The patient advocate can be reached at 901-287-6350.
As your child gets better, we’ll work with you and your family to prepare for a safe return home. Your child’s nurse will talk with you about any home care needs, at-home medications and follow-up visits with the doctor. The nurse will also tell you who to call if you have any questions or problems at home.
After the doctor says your child can go home, discharge orders will be written and a patient care assistant will help you prepare to leave. Bring loose, comfortable clothes for your child to wear home. Please make all arrangements, such as transportation, work schedules and child care needs, before the day of discharge.
If your child’s doctor has prescribed medicines for your child to use after leaving the hospital, you may pick them up at the Le Bonheur outpatient pharmacy or you may have your prescription(s) filled at another pharmacy.
After you get home you might have questions regarding your medical record or your bill. Additionally, many Le Bonheur families are interested in volunteering or giving back to the hospital after their stay. For more information on how to help, click here.