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Preparing To Go Home


To prepare for discharge from the hospital, be sure you have weather-appropriate clothing for your newborn (such as a t-shirt, outfit, sweater, coat, hat, blanket) as well as for you.

You also will need an appropriate car seat. It is Massachusetts law that all newborns have a properly fitting car seat in order to ride in a motor vehicle.

Because choosing a car seat for a newborn depends on the baby's size, some parents wait until the baby is born to purchase the seat. If you buy one ahead of time, we suggest that you keep the car seat box and receipt in case an exchange is needed.

Choosing a Car Seat

Beverly Hospital's Child Passenger Safety Program can help ensure you have the correct car seat. Beverly Hospital does not provide car seats, but our staff is here to advise you on your purchase.

All newborns need an appropriate five-point-harness car seat. If your baby is less than five pounds, you will need a car seat that accommodates smaller infants.

Beverly Hospital's Child Passenger Safety Program requirements do not permit newborns to be discharged in:

  • Seats that are not the right size for the baby.
  • Seats that are past their expiration date. They will be discarded (usually six years after manufacture).
  • Seats that have signs of damage that can affect the crashworthiness of the seat.
  • Seats that do not have a sticker indicating the device follows federal standards.

Our program is supervised by a certified child passenger safety technician with advanced training, and our staff includes occupational and physical therapists with education positioning and car seat fitting. To get in touch with one of our safety technicians, please email us.

Notice of Your Rights When You Have a Baby

While you are in the hospital:

  • You have the right by law to stay in the hospital with your baby for 48 hours after giving birth vaginally or 96 hours after birth if you have a cesarean birth.
  • The hospital may not send you and your baby home between 8 pm and 8 am, unless you ask to leave during that time.

If you choose to leave early:

  • You have the right to at least one home visit by a nurse. A home visit is voluntary. If you do not want one, please let your nurse know.
  • The Case Management Department will arrange for your home visit within 48 hours after you leave the hospital.

If you leave early and choose to have a home visit, the nurse who visits you at the first home visit will:

  • Check you and your new baby to be sure you are both healthy.
  • Answer any questions you may have and offer you information on feeding and taking care of your new baby.
  • If needed, take a small blood sample from the baby for newborn testing.
  • Help arrange checkups with a doctor, nurse or clinic for both you and your baby.

For more information:

  • If you have any questions about your rights under this law, talk to your doctor, midwife, or nurse, or you may call the Bureau of Health Care Safety and Quality at 617-753-8000, Monday through Friday, 8:45 am to 5:00 pm.

For complaints:

  • If you feel your rights have been denied under this law, you may call the Department of Public Health at 800-436-7757 or TD TTE 800-439-2370, 24 hours a day.



If you have any questions about our labor and childbirth services, please call us at 978-816-2229 (BABY).