For some infants suffering with GORD, hospital admissions are more common than for otherwise healthy babies. Hospital visits are never easy, but having the right gear can go a long way to making the experience more bearable. Below are some packing tips from our current members. If your child requires more regular admissions you might like to consider having a hospital bag packed so it is ready to go for emergencies.

  • Spare clothes for your child and yourself:
    • Hospitals are often well air-conditioned, even in summer, so bring clothing suited to a range of temperatures, including socks.
    • If your child will require an IV it is helpful to have short-sleeve tops with wide sleeves, so that clothing can be removed over the top of the cannula without pulling it out.
    • If your child will require an NG or NJ tube on a continuous pump you might prefer tops that can be taken off without needing to be pulled over their heads (eg blouse, onesie with poppers), so that the pump doesn’t need to be disconnected to change clothing. Some members use thin vests underneath clothing to tape the tubes to, so that they don’t get tangled or caught. Other members prefer tops with pockets on, so the tube can be placed in the pocket when not in use.
  • Most paediatric hospitals supplies infants’ bottles, but if your child has swallowing issues, feed refusal or a strong preference towards one brand of bottles, it is a good idea to bring their usual bottle and/or sippy cup. For emergency admissions you should also bring your child’s usual formula; for longer admissions the hospital may supply this. The hospital usually supplies a bottle brush and sterilising solution.
  • Although the hospital will supply food for your child, they will not provide food for parents. Your child might want food and snacks they normally eat at home, particularly children who have problems with feeding. You might like to bring some coins for vending machines.
  • Dummies and any comforters/favourite toys/sleep items. You might also like to bring a blanket from home to make your child feel more relaxed.
  • Toiletries for yourself and your child (if applicable)
  • Phone charger
  • A paediatric hospital will have toys your child can use, but you might like to bring a tablet/portable DVD player (useful for distraction during procedures)
  • Magazines, a book or a puzzle book and pen for yourself
  • Most importantly bring any relevant scans, medical notes, and current medicines. Compounding medicines that are normally kept in the fridge should be carried in a cooling box.

Written by: Gabi Simpson
Published: 16 July 2015