Day care questions

I have a million other things to worry about but I also need to start working on finding a day care for my baby. She was born at 23+6. She probably won't get out of NICU until around 4/5, her due date. I live in Austin and day care is hard to find. Waiting lists are the norm. But I don't know what to look for. I mean, I don't know if she will come home on oxygen, feeding tubes, other medical equipment. I thought about a nanny but there is no way I can afford that. I'm thinking in-home to limit exposure to other kids, but how do I interview when I don't know my child's needs? I'm a single mom and day care is needed. I live 2 hrs from my family. What did others do to ensure a day care was found and it was able to meet the needs of their baby?

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A few things:
I live in Austin, too, and daycares aren't very hard to find, in my estimation, after sending my kids to a few here. However, daycare is not necessarily the best place for a 23 weeker infant preemie. Daycares are extremely germy and the liklihood of infection is 100% - which means you'll be taking off a ton of work and your baby will be at risk for rehospitalizations.
In-home options are great - if you'd like, I can ask around to my Austin contacts and see if any of my friends can recommend any good in-home childcare options. The smaller the better.
Austin also has some coop daycare options, which seem to be popular. It's like in-home but in an institutional setting, and they require parents to volunteer and give back in some capacity.
We went the nanny route, which was made more affordable b/c we had twins. Full time daycare in Austin is between $800 and $1000/month for infants. Nannies are about $2000 to $2500/month for full-time.

Some of my friends did a nanny-share. They had one nanny for 3 infants, and each paid about $900/month. This was a great route for them b/c it was fewer kids and they knew eachother and had a sense of trust. You may find more information on Craigslist, Sittercity.com, or Care.com.

It may take a lot of investigation and getting creative, but I highly recommend staying out of an institutional daycare for at least one year, two is better. In all truthfulness, the illness risk is high and real. But also, I missed so much work when my girls were in daycare that first year (age 2-3) that I nearly lost 2 jobs. My bosses hated me and I really can't blame them. They were at the ER all the time, it nearly made it make more sense to not work at all.

This website can provide useful information:
http://www.dfps.state.tx.us/Child_Care/Search_Texas_Child_Care/CCLNET/Sourc e/CPA/ppSearchTXChildCare2.aspx

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It's a down economy, maybe you can find someone who needs work that can compromise some on price. Charge for a fixed price similar to day care instead of hourly wages. Try care.com but I would put an ad in a paper and start interviewing in case you choose to go that route.

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Also, while you're researching, you should probably just find out what local daycares do handle medically compromised babies. If your little girl does come home on oxygen or with a feeding tube it may be an issue because normal daycare providers are not qualified to handle that. It sounds like it might be a good discussion to have with your NICUs Social Worker. Your daughter was born so early. You are going to need some support. I hear you say your family is 2 hours away. Are they helpful? Would your mother consider moving in with your for a few months? Just thinking outside the box. It is very possible that your daughter will come home with some 'extra' needs. Wish you the best!

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Good morning!
My precious little daughter was born at 23weeks and 2days 11 days ago today! She will be in the NICU at least until her EDD, which was May 2nd, 2013. We were told by the Neonatologist that in no way could we send her to a regular daycare. It was just too risky with all the germs that spread around at least for the first 2-3 years. My DH and I are going to look into hiring either a Nanny or go through a company called Need A Nurse to have visiting Nurses come in the home. Like you we have no idea what her needs are oing to be when she leaves the NICU. I will definitely get someone qualified in CPR and or PALS. I think there is also a website called Care.com where they will help you find a childcare provider to come into the home. Call your insurance company and see what is available to you as far as home care is concerned. Also, the Social Worker at the hospital I dleivered at stated that I apply for SSI while my Kaitlyn is in the hospital and then apply for Medicaid to pick up the medical bills what my other insurance would not. My DH and I would not normally qualify for medicais due to making too much, but I was told that there are different levels you may be able to qualify for since we had a very premature baby. I hope this helps. If you need to talk please message me. Take care!
Michelle(36)DH(34)DD(13)DS(7) & DD(11 days)

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When are you going to need to start daycare and what part of Austin do you live in, again? I know we talked already, but can't remember or look it up in the few minutes I have twin-free! You can use the website listed above to check for in-home providers, and start making calls. Several of the ones I contacted when I was looking were comfortable with preemies and the idea of a baby on a monitor. Just be honest about the "preemie extras" and say, "She could come home on oxygen and a monitor or she could come home with nothing." They will let you know really quickly whether they're comfortable with that. Then ask to visit. Make sure the environment is clean, ask about sick baby policies (some home care providers allow sick children to come anyway), and whatever else you want to know. That will give you a good chance to tell her story and get a feel for how they react to some of the challenges she might face.

I think in-home care or a nanny is always the best choice for preemies. I couldn't afford either and put my 28-weeker twins in my workplace's daycare center (which is REALLY good), and they were sick from August until I pulled them out after Thanksgiving. Fewer kids definitely means fewer germs/illnesses. The suggestion to look at care.com was a good one. I found several people on there who had preemie experience, but didn't work out because of hours/scheduling issues.

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When are you going to need to start daycare and what part of Austin do you live in, again? I know we talked already, but can't remember or look it up in the few minutes I have twin-free! You can use the website listed above to check for in-home providers, and start making calls. Several of the ones I contacted when I was looking were comfortable with preemies and the idea of a baby on a monitor. Just be honest about the "preemie extras" and say, "She could come home on oxygen and a monitor or she could come home with nothing." They will let you know really quickly whether they're comfortable with that. Then ask to visit. Make sure the environment is clean, ask about sick baby policies (some home care providers allow sick children to come anyway), and whatever else you want to know. That will give you a good chance to tell her story and get a feel for how they react to some of the challenges she might face.

I think in-home care or a nanny is always the best choice for preemies. I couldn't afford either and put my 28-weeker twins in my workplace's daycare center (which is REALLY good), and they were sick from August until I pulled them out after Thanksgiving. Fewer kids definitely means fewer germs/illnesses. The suggestion to look at care.com was a good one. I found several people on there who had preemie experience, but didn't work out because of hours/scheduling issues.

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I actually live in Hutto. I work in north Austin around braker and 183. I would love to find an in home in the Hutto/round rock/pflugerville/north Austin area. Any recommendations would be great.

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There are a lot that post on craigslist. I remember looking for in-home for mine and being frustrated that all of them were up north. You could find the ones who take infants, based on their ads, and start calling/visiting. A lot of home providers now also have websites that have rates and pictures and things.

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While in the NICU, network. You see, a lot of moms in the NICU will be SAHMs, due to their children's situations and the fact that many are on Medicaid/SSI, etc. I found a fellow NICU resident's mother who planned to stay at home with her child. By paying her the same as I would have paid daycare, she watched my son too - basically, fraternal twins of separate uteri, since they were born at the same time. Doable and much better for us in the long run.

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That's why I asked where you were. I would have volunteered but I live way south. :(

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