In this section
As part of the Department of Neonatal Medicine at The Royal
Children's Hospital (RCH), the Butterfly ward provides the best neonatal
care for the sickest babies and infants from Victoria,
interstate and overseas.
With up to 851 admissions each year, the Butterfly
ward cares for patients from other hospitals in
Melbourne and country Victoria, southern New South Wales and
Tasmania and from the RCH Emergency Department.
Babies admitted to the Butterfly ward have a wide range of
complex medical and surgical problems. Some require the support of
a ventilator for their breathing and many require specialised
The management of our babies is overseen by a team of
Neonatologists, Neonatal Nurses and Allied Health specialists.
Particularly complex or long term patients are appointed a Nurse Coordinator to co-ordinate their care.
The care of Butterfly ward patients involves extensive
co-operation with many other teams and departments within the RCH.
Parents may spend time with their baby on the Butterfly ward 24 hours
a day, seven days a week. A maximum of three people are permitted
at the bedside at any one time, one of whom must be a parent
(unless parents nominate family members who may visit in their
absence.) Children under 12 years may only visit if they are
siblings of the patient.
Any visitors who are unwell with an infection, cold or flu or
who have come into contact with an infectious disease should check
with the bedside nurse or nurse in charge by phone before coming to
the Butterfly ward.
hours for general hospital visiting times.
Once discharged from the Butterfly ward, babies are followed up
by either their General Practitioner, Paediatrician or
Neonatologist. RCH Neonatologists see their patients in the RCH
Specialist Clinics (Outpatients) and appointments are arranged
prior to discharge.