Neonate Clinical Psychology Service

Having a new baby can be both a joyous and stressful time in any parent’s life.

The impact of having a baby who requires specialised care from our Neonatal Unit (NNU), however, can bring additional and unexpected stress and emotional challenges.

While focusing on your new baby’s needs is a priority, it is also important to monitor and manage your own emotional needs and distress.

The clinical psychologists within our NNU team support new parents during what can often be a difficult and challenging time while their baby is an NNU inpatient.

How clinical psychology can help

Clinical psychologists in the NNU team specialise in assessing and treating psychological difficulties during both the perinatal period (the time immediately before and after birth) and those unique to preterm birth and the neonatal experience.

You may benefit from speaking with a clinical psychologist if you are:

  • feeling anxious or fearful
  • feeling sad or hopeless
  • feeling stressed and overwhelmed
  • experiencing stress and conflict in interpersonal relationships due to your baby being in the NNU
  • feeling unsupported by family and friends
  • having difficulty processing a traumatic delivery of your baby
  • having other emotional or psychological difficulties related to or impacting your baby’s admission to the NNU.

Talking to a clinical psychologist might:

  • bring you a sense of relief
  • help you make sense of how you are feeling
  • help enhance current coping and develop some strategies to improve your emotional wellbeing
  • reduce your anxiety
  • empower you to cope better with your baby’s admission and beyond.

We can help you address issues that impact on your adjustment to either becoming a parent for the first time or to your family increasing.

We can also link you in with community organisations that specialise in perinatal wellbeing and parenting support.

Accessing the NNU Clinical Psychology Service

You can ask your NNU nurse, doctor or other allied health practitioner to refer you to our service at any time while your baby is an NNU inpatient.

Appointments are available Monday to Friday during normal working hours and are usually 50 – 60 minutes.

We do not offer medical guidance or opinions about medical treatments. If you have questions about your medical treatment, we recommend you ask your doctor.

Please note we do not provide immediate crisis or emergency services.

More information

Neonate Clinical Psychology Service
Department of Clinical Psychology and Neuropsychology
Fiona Stanley Hospital
102 – 118 Murdoch Drive, Murdoch WA 6150
Phone: (08) 6152 2222