Boston Medical Center’s new maternity unit, the Women and Infants Center, offers a quality medical experience in a beautiful space with a strong focus on family-centered care. The Maternity Unit is located on the 4th Floor of the Yawkey Building. Here you will find: Labor and Delivery, the MotherBaby Unit, and the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.

Our staff, with the support of all hospital employees, is committed to making every birth a memorable and special occasion.

Boston Medical Center is a World Health Organization (WHO) and UNICEF designated Baby-Friendly hospital. This international award recognizes excellence in lactation support. We provide care based on the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP)-endorsed Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding.  Numerous organizations, including the WHO and AAP, recommend exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of life.

Things you should know

All maternity staff are familiar with the Infant Feeding Policy and have received training to help carry out the policy.

Your baby will be placed skin-to-skin with you right after birth.

  • If you have a vaginal birth, and there are no complications, your baby will be placed directly on your chest after delivery and will remain there until the first breastfeed or for an hour for the formula-feeding mother.
  • If you have a Cesarean birth, and there are no complications, your baby will be placed skin-to-skin with you as soon as you are stable and alert, usually in the recovery room. We also encourage skin-to-skin holding with the father or other labor support person.

Skin-to-skin contact is important for all babies because it helps with bonding, keeps your baby warm, keeps your baby’s blood sugar in a normal range and gets breastfeeding off to a great start. Babies who are held this way also cry less. Skin-to-skin holding allows your baby a gentle entry into the world and assists your baby to progress through a number of amazing developmental skills.

After birth, you and your baby will be transferred from the Labor and Delivery Unit to a private room in the beautiful, new MotherBaby Unit. The same nurse who is taking care of you will also be taking care of your baby.

Your baby will stay in the room with you. This is known as rooming-in and will help you to get to know your baby under the watchful care of our highly trained staff. We will teach you about safe skin-to-skin holding and safe sleep.  Examinations and tests for the baby will be done in your room including the hepatitis B shot, newborn metabolic screen (blood test obtained from the heel), bilirubin test (blood test obtained from the heel), hearing screen, and heart screen.

Visiting Hours on the MotherBaby Unit end at 8:00 PM every day. Your support person is encouraged to stay with you. We are sorry, but no children can stay overnight.

So you can rest, Quiet Time is observed every day from 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM. Please share this information with your family and visitors so they can arrange their visit around this time.

Your baby’s first bath will be delayed for at least 12-24 hours. This will allow your baby to stay warm and the blood sugar to stabilize.

If your choice is to breastfeed your baby:

  • You will be provided support from our highly trained maternity staff.
  • Lactation Consultants are available to offer their expert services.
  • The MotherBaby Unit and Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) can offer Pasteurized Human Donor Milk if needed.
  • Your baby will not routinely receive pacifiers.

If your choice is to formula feed your baby:

  • You will be provided instructions about safe preparation and feeding of infant formula.
  • You will be taught paced bottle-feeding.

We will refer you to parenting and feeding support groups upon discharge.

If needed, your nurse will be happy to complete your WIC form. In addition, our staff will assist you in completing the Birth Certificate application.

Please make plans to bring in a car seat a day prior to discharge.

Please think about where you would like your baby to be seen for the first check-up. That appointment will be scheduled for when your baby is 3-5 days of life.

Our goal is for discharge to occur by 11:00 AM. Please arrange for transportation.

As a Baby-Friendly hospital, BMC follows the International Code of Marketing of Breast Milk Substitutes (the Code). The infant formula, bottles and nipples that we use are purchased at Fair Market Value.

We are honored to be part of this important occasion in your family’s life.
Boston Medical Center. Exceptional Care. Without Exception.

Contact Us

850 Harrison Avenue, Boston, MA 02118
4th Floor
Yawkey Center
617.414.4363
Monday, Thursday: 8:30 AM - 8:00 PM Tuesday, Friday: 8:30 AM - 5:00 PM Wednesday: 9:30 AM - 5:00 PM

Visiting Hours

Fathers and significant others are welcome anytime. General visiting hours for all others are 8:00 AM - 8:00 PM.

Quiet Time is practiced on the unit 7 days per week from 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM.

Programs and Services

Birth Sisters

The Birth Sister will meet the expectant mother when she is pregnant, stay with and support her during her labor, and visit her during the first week at home. She will help with laundry, errands, or the care of other children so mothers can be with their new baby.

Lactation Services

The Lactation Service at Boston Medical Center provides 7-day a week lactation care by IBCLC-certified lactation consultants. Our lactation specialists provide services for patients in the BirthPlace Postpartum Unit, the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, the Pediatric Inpatient Unit, the Pediatric Primary Care Clinic and the Adolescent Center.

Pain-Free Newborn Care

Pain Free Newborn Care is a program designed to minimize the pain and discomfort associated with a pediatric patient’s hospital visit.

For newborns undergoing a circumcision, the following analgesics are recommended:

Our Team

Susan A Minear, MD

Associate Professor of Pediatrics, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston MA

Child Behavior and Development, Primary Care Pediatrics, Newborn care

Patient Resources

Having Your Baby at BMC

A baby's safety is very important at BMC. Only staff wearing yellow identification badges are allowed to transport a baby from a mother's room to other areas. Each baby will have a tag placed on his/her ankle when admitted to the unit.

Additional Resources

Neonatal Intensive Care Unit

A specialized team of professionals in the Level III, 15-bed NICU, care for infants who require close observation and additional therapy. They provide families with medical and emotional support.