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Neonatal Care

Children’s neonatology program provides clinical expertise and compassionate care for more than 1,900 newborns each year, making us the largest high-risk neonatal referral center in the Upper Midwest. Parents and health experts across the region trust us to deliver top-notch care for babies who arrive early or with unique needs.

Whether it’s septuplets, preemies, babies with heart failure or those need a little extra care, we’re here to care for all babies. And we're proud to have some of the highest survival rates and lowest complication rates in the world. See our outcomes.

Throughout Children’s two hospitals and at The Mother Baby Center locations, we have different neonatal units to support all babies on their healing journey. 

Neonatal Care Units at the Mother Baby Centers

The Mother Baby Center at Abbott Northwestern and Children's—Minneapolis

  • Level IV Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU)
  • Level II Special Care Nursery
  • Infant Care Center
  • Newborn Care Area

The Mother Baby Center at Mercy with Children's 

  • Level II Special Care Nursery
  • Newborn Care Area

The Mother Baby Center at United and Children's—St. Paul 

  • Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU)
  • Level II Special Care Nursery
  • Newborn Care Area

About the neonatal units


Our level IV NICU in Minneapolis and Level III NICU in St. Paul are the highest-­level NICU’s available. They specialize in caring for multiples, babies with congenital abnormalities, premature and tiny babies, and infants born with complex medical diagnoses. A neonatologist is always available. Additional neonatal specialists, including neonatal nurse practitioners, respiratory therapists, specially educated nurses and unit-­based pharmacists, care for newborns around the clock.

While their child is in the NICU, we encourage parents to participate in daily observations and treatments. Parents can even sleep in their child's room. When their child is well enough to go home, we help parents follow up with their local health care provider to make sure their child receives long­term care.


The special care nursery is for babies who are born prematurely or require extra care. This population is typically between 36 weeks gestation and term.

The special care nurseries have all private patient rooms. The quiet, soothing environment was designed by a group of dedicated nurses to deliver the most extraordinary care and to support the important nurturing and bonding between moms and their precious babies. The special care nursery is also equipped with the latest medical technologies to promote growth and development.

In Minneapolis, the 24-room special care nursery has 31 beds to serve moms and babies, including multiples (twins, triplets, etc.), with the latest medical technologies to promote growth and development. In Coon Rapids, The Mother Baby Center at Mercy with Children's features the only special care nursery in the north metro that offers all private rooms. It has 10 private rooms with a total of 14 bassinets, including accommodations for multiples.


The Infant Care Center specializes in the care of fragile newborns and babies as old as one year. The specialized critical care unit has 32 beds, all in private rooms. Four rooms are designed especially for twins. Because parent interaction promotes growth and bonding, parents can stay overnight in their child's room. Overnight stays also help parents get ready to care for baby at home.

This service is available at these locations: Coon Rapids, Minneapolis and St. Paul.