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Clinics and Programs

Baby-Friendly Initiative

Carle Foundation Hospital in Urbana has been designated a Baby-Friendly® hospital as part of the Baby-Friendly USA Initiative. With this designation, Carle is recognized for being prepared to help you and your new baby get off to the best start. Baby-Friendly® hospitals demonstrate that they have policies and care practices that meet the gold standard for mother/baby care practices related to breastfeeding. Staff is specially trained to care for breastfeeding moms and babies. Moms and babies are encouraged to stay together day and night to encourage better bonding and breastfeeding.

What is the benefit of being a Baby-Friendly® facility?
Evidence shows Baby-Friendly® practices help create healthier children, mothers, families and communities:

  • Kids get sick less, have less risk for obesity, diabetes and some leukemia
  • Moms have less risk for obesity, diabetes, ovarian and breast cancers
  • Families miss less time from work and school because kids are healthier, they spend less money on illness and preventable diseases, no money on formula
  • Communities spend less time, energy and resources on formula, illnesses and medical needs
  • As a Baby-Friendly® facility, you can expect the following from us:
  • Skin-to-skin at delivery for all new moms.  We encourage you to hold the baby immediately at birth as long as you and baby are healthy.
  • Rooming-in – we keep moms and babies together. Research has shown that moms sleep better in the hospital with their babies nearby. Moms are also provided around-the-clock nursing help to learn their babies’ normal cues for their needs. Most testing can be done in the room.
  • Feeding assistance – evidence shows the best first feeding is breast milk. The best way to establish milk supply is to have the baby with you to feed on demand. However, should you plan or need to bottle feed, we will support your feeding method of choice and assure you how to prepare formula  and care for your feeding supplies.
  • Lactation support from trained Lactation Consultants, as needed, throughout your stay.
  • Community support information for continued breastfeeding needs and support.

Additional Resources


Cesarean Births

Sometimes a cesarean birth (C-section) is the safest way to deliver your baby. A cesarean birth is a procedure in which the doctor surgically delivers your baby. While a C-section birth may be frightening at first, it can be just as joyous and rewarding for you and your birth partner as a vaginal birth.
A C-section birth may be needed for a number of reasons – your baby is in distress or in the wrong position, your pelvis is too small, your baby is too large, your labor isn’t progressing, or you had a previous delivery by C-section.
C-section births take place in an obstetrical operating room where you will be attended by:

  • An obstetrician
  • Assistant (another physician, physician assistant or certified nurse midwife)
  • Your labor and delivery nurse
  • Surgical technologist
  • Certified registered nurse anesthetist (CRNA) and anesthesiologist to manage anesthesia throughout the procedure
  • NICU staff may be present for any medical needs related to the care of the newborn
  • Baby advocate – registered nurse responsible specifically for the care of the newborn from birth through the first hour of life

To prepare you for a C-section birth, your nurse will start an intravenous therapy (IV), clean and shave your lower abdomen. Usually, you will be given spinal or epidural anesthesia. Then a catheter, or thin tube, will be inserted into your bladder. The anesthesia allows you to be awake during the birth and to share the birth experience. In most cases, your support person will be allowed to be with you during the surgical procedure. There are some circumstances which medically require general anesthesia. You can discuss options with your provider.
Following the C-section birth, there will be a one- to two-hour recovery period in the recovery room. During that time, you will be watched closely and made as comfortable as possible. Generally, your baby will be with you during your recovery time to maximize bonding and initiate breastfeeding if desired. You will have a nurse with you throughout your c-section recovery.
If you are having a scheduled C-section , your care provider will share specific surgery instructions with you prior to your scheduled surgery date, and you will receive a call the evening before from Labor and Delivery with additional information.

Baby and Prenatal Classes

All About Baby is our prenatal and family education program, designed to guide you and your family through this exciting time. Most women find it helpful to attend their prenatal classes between 30 and 36 weeks of pregnancy. We recommend the Prepared Childbirth Education Class be completed by 36 weeks of pregnancy.
We encourage you, as well as your family and friends, to attend these classes. The information you gather beforehand can only help you and your family prepare.

All of our baby classes are open to both Carle and non-Carle patients. A small fee is charged for some classes to cover expenses, but for most classes there are no fees. We do ask, however, that you register in advance for any of the classes offered.
View upcoming All About Baby classes


Carle’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit is happy to be the first in Illinois to offer the NICVIEW™ Web Camera System. These live streaming cameras allow parents with up to 24/7 viewing of their baby while he or she is in the NICU.

This enables parents to see their baby even when they are not on site and allows other family members who live far away, siblings that are not able to enter the NICU or deployed parents to view and bond with Baby from afar. NICVIEW™ cameras are protected by encrypted transmission and are only accessible to specified users using passwords issued by the NICU.

This service is generously funded by Carle Center for Philanthropy.


Helpful Hints for Parents

Treated Conditions

Meet Our Team

With doctors practicing in 80 specialties at locations throughout the region, it’s easy to find the right healthcare team at Carle. Our mission is to serve people through high quality care, medical research and education.


Please Contact Us if you have any questions.