Your clinical nurse specialist (CNS) aims to visit you and your newborn baby within 24 hours of being informed of the birth.
If you had an antenatal diagnosis of the cleft, your clinical nurse specialist will help you to use the feeding method you have chosen and will also reinforce the information that you have already discussed.
If you were unaware of the cleft until after your baby’s birth, your clinical nurse specialist will provide you with information on:
- Your baby’s cleft
- Treatments available for your baby
- Our team and what we do
You will be able to see photographs of babies before and after cleft repair should you wish.
Your clinical nurse specialist will carry out a feeding assessment of your baby and give advice on an appropriate feeding method (see feeding your baby), working with you in your choice to either breast or formula feed. They will then arrange to meet with you again, usually at your home following discharge from hospital. If your baby has to stay in hospital longer because of any other problems, the next meeting may be while you are still in hospital.
Your clinical nurse specialist will continue to support and work with you, making home visits as required during the first year of your baby’s life and organising for you and your baby to attend an outpatient clinic with the cleft team. As well as giving information and feeding management, the clinical nurse specialist will also advise you through your baby’s clinic appointments and surgery, acting as a point of contact for you and your child for the duration of your care with us.