Published on February 16th, 2018


St. Luke’s Introduces ‘Cuddler’ Program for Infants

Newborns at St. Luke’s University Health Network are getting lots of love this Valentine’s Day thanks to the Network’s new “cuddler” program.

Cuddler volunteers are specially trained to interact with babies, both premature and full-term, during times when their parents can’t be with them at the hospital. Every parent wants to be with their baby, but sometimes jobs, appointments and family demands at home take them away. During these times, parents can take great comfort in knowing that cuddlers are available for their baby.

Research shows cuddling helps to support the development and growth of infants.

What do cuddlers do?

  • Provide a human touch, holding babies
  • Read to babies or quietly sing to them to provide stimulation.

Cuddlers receive extensive training, follow strict hand washing practices while in the hospital to ensure babies are safe from infection and adhere to all hospital policies and confidentiality requirements.

Photo Caption: From front to back and left to right: Mom Leila Burke with Baby Romeo; Cuddler Volunteers Nina McCullough and Dr. Marnie O’Brien; Jessika Haynos, Service Line Manager, Children’s Services, St. Luke’s University Health Network; Barbara Raab, BSN, RNC-NIC, March of Dimes NICU Family Support Coordinator, St. Luke’s University Health Network.

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