can't take baby home from hospital w/o bucket seat? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 41 Old 09-27-2010, 02:43 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Please tell me this isn't true. I was reading a discussion on another board (Canadian, like me) and someone said that they won't let you take your newborn home unless you have an infant bucket seat. I'm not using a bucket seat this time around, I have a True Fit. I mean of course if baby is too small we'll run and grab a bucket.

Is this true? I hope not!!!

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#2 of 41 Old 09-27-2010, 02:49 PM
 
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It's not true here. We have to check the seat against recalls and expiration, so it has to come inside but we send babies home in convertibles quite frequently. There's no reason to require a parent to have a bucket seat provided the child fits in the convertible of course.

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#3 of 41 Old 09-27-2010, 02:51 PM
 
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They are trying to enforce the car seat rule. If your carseat is rated for newborns, you will be fine. Can you believe there are still people out there that don't see a need for a carseat? So they may have used bucket seat terms but they mean you must have a car seat. Or they will supply you one if low income.
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#4 of 41 Old 09-27-2010, 02:58 PM
 
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At my hospital in Toronto you had to be able to bring the seat in for the oxygen test, but I don't think it had to be a bucket style seat.

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#5 of 41 Old 09-27-2010, 03:05 PM
 
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I'm in BC. Here, before they discharge you & baby, they take a look at your car seat and compare it to a list of acceptable (ie no recalls and not expired) seats. It doesn't have to be a bucket seat, necessarily, just rated OK for an infant. The nurse here checked the way we had buckled her in, made some adjustments, and we were off. That was 5 months ago, so pretty recent. If you have doubts, I would just call the Labour & Delivery ward and ask directly. They're not unreasonable, they just want to make sure the infants are safe.
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#6 of 41 Old 09-27-2010, 03:20 PM
 
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haha, my hospital didn't even check to see if our seat had expired or if we had her in it right, or do an oxygen test or anything. we strapped her in, they took a quick look and let us go. and, for the record, it WAS an expired seat, AND she was a preemie, so i'm doubly surprised in retrospect.

(in our defence, she was 5 weeks early, we didn't own a car and had been planning a homebirth, so carseats were not even on my radar. my MIL gave us the seat for an emergency, but since i didn't know anything about seats, i didn't even realize seats could expire. i knew it was old, based on what i saw other people using, but when i nervously asked the nurse about it when we were getting ready to leave, she didn't even blink... the darn thing was so old it didn't even have a 5 point harness! i'm mortified that i ever put her in that thing now... thank god for MDC!)

sooo, anyway, i think it varies incredibly from hospital to hospital. you could end up with a real PITA nurse who doesn't realize convertibles are safe for infants, or you could end up with someone a bit more "relaxed."
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#7 of 41 Old 09-27-2010, 03:50 PM
 
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I'd take in the instruction manual which should show the weight minimums (mine is 5-45 lbs RF) so they can see the seat is intended for newborns.

Loving my two wild and crazy boys -- DS1 06/07 and DS2 12/09
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#8 of 41 Old 09-27-2010, 04:08 PM
 
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i'd call where you are planning on delivering and asking them directly. i've heard that about one of our hospitals here but it turned out to be untrue.

wife to dh, mama to dd1   june 2007, dd2 march 2009 and dd3 april 2011
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#9 of 41 Old 09-27-2010, 04:17 PM
 
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When I had my fourth here (Ontario) they didn't even ask if we had a carseat when we left the hospital.

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#10 of 41 Old 09-27-2010, 04:25 PM
 
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They may say that, but they can't actually stop you from leaving. They may ask you to bring the seat up to the floor to see it & see baby in it. If you don't want to do that, just request to sign the waiver form.

Tandem nursing, Baby-wearing, Co-sleeping, Car seat-checkin' (CRST) Mama to my sweet boys, Peter (4.20.08) and Jasper (4.25.11).
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#11 of 41 Old 09-27-2010, 04:26 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Well ok then. I hope no one wants me to bring the seat inside. The whole point of having it installed is so I don't have to go thru the hassle of installing it at the hospital. The True Fit is kinda a PITA lol. When I had my son we had a bucket and they didn't check to make sure it was installed correctly. And I wasn't the carseat freak that I am today, so I can't say for certain if it was or not . Anyways ty for your replies. I am stressed about having this baby in a hospital in the first place and the bucket thing set me off .

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#12 of 41 Old 09-27-2010, 04:34 PM
 
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if they insist on seeing the seat, ask your hubby to drive the car up to the front door and then have them come to the door to see your seat.

truthfully though, i find it does depend a lot on the mood of the nurse that day. i remember when dd1 was born, we had to bring in her convertible seat to pass an oxygen test (she had put in the nicu for desaturations; this isn't standard practice for all babies at our hospital) so the nurse definitely saw the seat. when we were going to leave, hubby left a few minutes before us to get the seat installed in the car again and i was about to walk out carrying dd1 in my arms. the nurse was appalled that i was carrying my child in my arms! she was quite insistent that i needed to carry dd out in her carseat because i might drop her. i just looked at her, said have a nice day, and continued on my way.

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#13 of 41 Old 09-27-2010, 04:47 PM
 
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We walked home from the hospital with our youngest. It wasn't standard, but it was okay. We explained that we didn't have a car, but we had other children and plenty of carseats if we needed one to use in a rental or something.

We also had a convertible seat with our other DS. DH took it up the the unit to show them though. He didn't have any trouble re-installing it. It was our third baby and he was expert at installing the seat by that point.

I've heard of plenty of people in Canada just having a hospital stuff go down and check the seat in the parking garage though.

Julie - Mom to Elizabeth (Libby) age 6, Penelope (Penny) age 5, Elliott age 29 months, and Oscar who is 1 year old!
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#14 of 41 Old 09-27-2010, 04:52 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by galincognito View Post
the nurse was appalled that i was carrying my child in my arms! she was quite insistent that i needed to carry dd out in her carseat because i might drop her. i just looked at her, said have a nice day, and continued on my way.
LOL. Too funny. My dh asked the (overbearing but well-meaning) nurse after we signed the paperwork "So, is he ours now?"

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#15 of 41 Old 09-27-2010, 05:53 PM
 
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We also gave birth at a hospital in Montreal. No one mentioned that we needed to have the car seat checked, but we did anyway to make sure. They just verified that the straps were tight enough and sent us on our way. Little did we know that the base was installed totally wrong!!!! Serves me right for having someone else install it (whose baby was then 3 and past bucket-seat age) instead of checking how to do it myself.

Anyway, I'm sure we could have left without having the seat checked at all. In fact, in our pre-natal class HALF the couples said they had no car (we don't either, but my parents picked us up) and asked what to do if they were going home by taxi or bus. The teacher didn't even know how to answer that one...

Woman, Wife, Mom to beautiful DD (10/14/09), Copywriter, occasionally tearing my hair out but usually pretty happy about it all
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#16 of 41 Old 09-27-2010, 05:55 PM
 
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the car seat salesman and babies r us tried to tell me that. I think it's a rumor. I called l&d at my hospital to confirm that a truefit would work.

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#17 of 41 Old 09-27-2010, 06:11 PM
 
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Originally Posted by galincognito View Post
the nurse was appalled that i was carrying my child in my arms! she was quite insistent that i needed to carry dd out in her carseat because i might drop her. i just looked at her, said have a nice day, and continued on my way.
That cracks me up, because at OUR hospital, it's the opposite-- you aren't allowed to carry them out in the seat. It HAS to be in the MOTHER'S arms. Even with the twins-- they made ME carry both of them, which was so wrong because I was only five days past a c-section, and it was so hard for me to manage both of them at the same time. The babies would have been WAY safer with one of them in a seat, or in DH's arms.

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#18 of 41 Old 09-28-2010, 04:46 AM
 
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OMG, how weird. Mother's arms? Car seats??

I had my babies in France. For the first two, they didn't even mention car seats. We just went home.

For my third, I walked home from the hospital... across the street! It started to snow, which was strange as usually end of Feb. we're done with that.

But I think it's a good thing. I see children poorly secured here in France, or not at all.

I kind of like the idea that the baby should be carried by the mother out of the hospital. I really hate seeing people carrying babies around in infant car seats (I used to put the baby in a carrier and then carried the car seat, if I needed it, in my hand). But logically, they should make an exception for twins lol!
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#19 of 41 Old 09-28-2010, 06:34 AM
 
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They checked our Britax manual and that was it. I said they could come see it but the manual was enough.

Homebirthing Mama to busy DD (2008), cuddly DS (2010) and midwife to be
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#20 of 41 Old 09-28-2010, 03:08 PM
 
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My hospital insisted on wheeling me out in a wheelchair, baby in arms, even though I was fine to walk.

All they did was look to see that we had a car seat (we have a bucket), didn't wait around to check fit or straps.

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#21 of 41 Old 09-28-2010, 03:45 PM
 
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#22 of 41 Old 09-28-2010, 04:04 PM
 
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Where in Canada are you?

At my recent Cdn tech course, we were told that while hospitals may TELL you this, they have no legal bearing to actually prevent you from leaving, or keeping you from your baby. Humour them if you want to, but you certainly don't have to.

And if you're using a convertible and they want to check it (and you want to let them), they may accompany you down to the car. It makes absolutely no sense to pull a convertible out and then reinstall it.

Call ahead to know what to expect -- and realize that most hospital staff are not techs and may not (read: won't) know what they're talking about or be up to date on current regs or best practices. Good luck.
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#23 of 41 Old 09-28-2010, 04:46 PM
 
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I'm in BC, and have a TrueFit. I think they asked to see the seat, but we'd spent so much time installing it at the right angle, there was NO WAY I was going to take it out. We wouldn't have been able to get it back in- it took both dp and me, and I wasn't in any shape to help right then (12h pp). They told us to go to a car seat check as soon as we could.

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#24 of 41 Old 09-28-2010, 06:47 PM
 
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I'm in BC too and with DD they told us (at the class before birth) that we HAD to have a bucket and that we could not bring in our convertible to show them and they WOULD NOT come out to the car. So we just borrowed a bucket from a friend. Used the same bucket when we brought DS home.

I can believe that it isn't true and that they can't force it at all, but they sure made it seem like it when we had our first.

I THINK part of the deal is that the hospital is also supposed to have seats then for people who cannot afford to buy one for their baby.

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#25 of 41 Old 09-28-2010, 07:37 PM
 
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I think this is just so weird! It isn't the hospital's baby, is it?

I would find it extremely inappropriate for a nurse to ask to see our carseat or express opinions on whose arms my baby should be carried in.

We might walk, drive our own car home, take the bus, or a taxi - nobody's business but our own.
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#26 of 41 Old 09-28-2010, 10:57 PM
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DD was born here in NZ, but the "rules" seem to be similar. They want you to bring bucket up, to buckle baby in for you, and then came with us down to the car.

However, I know someone who lives a few blocks from the hospital, and she walked home with her baby in a push chair, and nobody hassled her.

However, I found out later that the bucket, which we had been given by good friends who did not need it any longer, was ore than 10 years old (it also had only a 3-point belt). Nobody at the hospital noticed or mentioned this. So much for "checking the seat"! (When we found out, DD was over 3 months old, and we got a good convertible instead, a Brio Zento).
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#27 of 41 Old 09-28-2010, 11:51 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Where in Canada are you?

At my recent Cdn tech course, we were told that while hospitals may TELL you this, they have no legal bearing to actually prevent you from leaving, or keeping you from your baby. Humour them if you want to, but you certainly don't have to.

And if you're using a convertible and they want to check it (and you want to let them), they may accompany you down to the car. It makes absolutely no sense to pull a convertible out and then reinstall it.

Call ahead to know what to expect -- and realize that most hospital staff are not techs and may not (read: won't) know what they're talking about or be up to date on current regs or best practices. Good luck.
I'm in New Brunswick. Thanks for your post, very helpful.

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#28 of 41 Old 09-29-2010, 12:03 AM
 
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That cracks me up, because at OUR hospital, it's the opposite-- you aren't allowed to carry them out in the seat. It HAS to be in the MOTHER'S arms. Even with the twins-- they made ME carry both of them, which was so wrong because I was only five days past a c-section, and it was so hard for me to manage both of them at the same time. The babies would have been WAY safer with one of them in a seat, or in DH's arms.
I put DD2 in her carseat and hooked it into the stroller till we got to the car. And, on our way home, not 5 minutes after leaving the hospital, we nearly got into a car accident. (Someone ran a stop sign, but we were able to slam on the brakes and avoided any collision, as we were just starting from our stop sign and there was no one behind us, thank goodness). I've carried the other 2 out in their seats. I don't like it because those seats are so unwieldy.

Some hospitals will insist upon you bringing the convertible up and having them check it in the room and refuse to go to your car. So, your choices are: A) bring it up to the room, then re-install it. or B) borrow a bucket seat from a friend/relative that has a baby that has just outgrown the seat within the past 2 years and take it up there and give it to the nurses and then switch the baby to your seat in the car. or C) fight them on it. but find out the policy before you go in and they have the opportunity to hold the baby "hostage".
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#29 of 41 Old 09-29-2010, 12:56 AM
 
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Hey, fellow New Brunswicker here! Did you know the Midwifery Act just got passed? I can't wait until we actually have the full options of legal homebirths with midwives here.

Neither of my babies were born in NB. DS was born in Victoria BC 12 years ago, and I honestly can't remember at ALL if we had to bring a car seat up for him. We didn't have a car at the time, we DID buy a convertible seat for when we did need to go in someone else's car but I can't recall when lol...

DD was born in Hamilton, ON, 4 years ago. We had to bring the car seat up to show them and strap DD in. This was a Radian. Which is SO not a bucket lol... Anyway, all that was fine, I'd practised installing the seat so I was confident we'd get it back in alright.

The funny part is when they tried to tell us that we had to carry the baby out in the car seat. Um, hello? This is NOT a carseat designed to be carried! They just didn't know what to make of it. They could see that it didn't make sense, but they didn't know how to react or what to do. They did finally agree that seeing her strapped in it had been enough and she didn't really need to STAY strapped in the whole time, but you could tell they had NEVER seen that before (how sad!) and were really unsure if they were breaking some massively-important rule by letting my walk out with her in a sling!!!!

*sigh*

As for the TrueFit, our second car seat is a TrueFit (which we bought a year or so later when we needed one for the other car all the time). I find it absolutely the EASIEST seat to install I've ever used! So hopefully you won't have a problem with that, in case they won't go along with coming down to look at it in your car.

But yeah... if they put up a fuss about a bucket or whatever, just appeal to common sense, stand your ground, know your rights etc.

Heather, mom to Caileigh 12/06 and aspie ADHD prodigy David 05/98 :intact lact
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#30 of 41 Old 09-29-2010, 07:25 AM
 
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We walked home from the hospital. The pediatricians tried to tell us that we HAD to leave by car, with a carseat, and we just stood our ground. We live as close to the hospital as its parking garage, and don't own a car, so that made no sense at all. We did tell them that if they wished to lay eyes on our carseat, DH would bring it, then take it home and come back to walk home with me and the baby. In the end, they settled for having us just tell them the brand & model of the seat and making sure it was not on the recall list. The nurse walked us to the door of the hospital looking kind of perplexed as to what to do next, so we just said goodbye and kept on walking! It was night and very cold, and DS was wrapped up in three blankets like a burrito. I was glad we didn't need to unwrap him to install him in his convertible seat in a cold car. I also didn't want to put him down and was happy to have him in my arms.
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