Safe at Home Program

Safe at Home Program

Helping children go home between heart surgeries

Children’s Health enables babies with congenital heart disease to live at home between early heart surgeries.

Babies with single ventricle congenital heart disease often need a series of procedures in their first four to six months of life. The Safe at Home Program at Children's Health℠ enables some of these babies to live at home rather than staying at the hospital between their first and second surgery.

During this time, families are in close contact with a multidisciplinary team who teach families how to care for their child and how to monitor important data on their child’s condition every day. This team includes a cardiologist, Safe at Home Advanced Care Provider (APP), dedicated Safe at Home social worker, dietitian, speech therapist and psychologist.

We are members of the National Pediatric Cardiology Quality Improvement Collaborative, a network of care centers focused on improving outcomes for children with heart disease. When these babies are cared for at home between their first two heart operations, they have better early development and other outcomes.

Monitoring at home

To keep babies safe at home, we educate families about their baby’s condition and about the information that they need to share with us each day. We provide each family with a pulse oximeter (which measures oxygen in the blood), an infant scale and an iPad so they can record their measurements and share them with us. Our nurse practitioners teach parents what to monitor for and what might be a concern they should call us about.

Direct line to nurses

Parents can call Safe at Home’s nurse practitioners on a direct line, 24/7. We answer questions and troubleshoot problems, from trouble with feeding to fever to low oxygen saturation.

If your baby needs to be seen by a doctor, we can do same-day clinic visits. If your baby needs immediate care, we will direct you to the ER or, rarely, have you call 911.

Continuity of nursing care

The Safe at Home team of nurse practitioners will work with you and your baby from birth through the second surgery. We work hard to establish a good relationship with your family. Each nurse practitioner gets to know each baby and what they need.

Open communication

Our team of specialists caring for your baby talks openly and regularly, so that each of us is always up to date on your baby’s care. This open communication translates into better care. When your baby is discharged after the first surgery, we also reach out to your pediatrician and tell them about the program and what symptoms to look for.

Meet the Care Team