Children's Hospital Colorado
A close-up of a baby holding mom's finger.

We want what you want: a safe pregnancy and delivery, and for your baby to grow up as healthy as possible. That all becomes a little more difficult and stressful if you receive a prenatal diagnosis or spend time in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) or Cardiac Intensive Care Unit (CICU) after your baby is born. That’s why Children’s Hospital Colorado provides a full range of mental health and other social support services for your whole family through our Connections Program.

Connections Program for mental health and social support

Prenatal Counseling

We emphasize that your family’s mental health is a vital part of your overall health. The Connections Program specializes in mental health care for infants and families who have high-risk medical needs from pregnancy through early childhood. Our specialists provide assessment and educational and hands-on services to parents, infants and families who we care for in our Colorado Fetal Care Center or have a baby in our NICU or CICU.

From prenatal counseling for a high-risk pregnancy to helping you adjust to a long hospital stay to services for postpartum mood and anxiety disorders, we care for you during every step of your journey to parenthood. Our experts have extensive training and experience helping families in this setting and focus on creating and maintaining a healthy parent-child attachment.

Focus on prevention and mental health support for families

Our team takes a proactive approach to your family’s mental well-being. Experienced mental health providers work with you throughout your pregnancy, delivery and early childhood to prevent mental health issues from becoming serious and promote positive mental health. We work with you to enhance family wellness, encourage positive health behaviors and foster healthy parent-child attachment and relationships. We also help reduce the risk for perinatal (the period of time before and after birth) mood and anxiety disorders and child developmental and mental health conditions.

Mental and social health services

Every family is different, so we provide individualized care and a wide range of high-risk pregnancy support services, including:

  • Assessment and treatment for parental mental health disorders, including postpartum depression, anxiety and trauma
  • Support in coping with a fetal or neonatal diagnosis
  • Individual therapy for parents and siblings
  • Support for parenting a child with a complex medical condition
  • Help adjusting to the NICU or CICU setting
  • Decision-making support
  • Bereavement services
  • Educational groups to learn about managing challenges associated with a fetal diagnosis or hospital stay
  • Help with problem-solving, communication, coping and infant-parent interactions
  • Consultation with your medical team to best support your care
  • Guidance on connecting you with related clinics and helpful resources and activities

Mental health care team

Our team is made up of nationally recognized experts in infant mental health and perinatal and maternal mental health. They specialize in developmental and behavioral outcomes of infants born with medical complications. Ask your nurse, doctor or anyone else involved in your care if you would like to speak with one of our mental health experts or perinatal social workers.

Our care team includes:

  • Psychologists
  • Psychiatrists
  • Mental health clinicians
  • Clinical social workers
  • Other behavioral health specialists

Why choose Children’s Colorado for prenatal counseling and parental mental health support?

Providers in the Connections Program recognize the challenges that you face when learning your baby has a medical condition, during the NICU or CICU stay and when you go home. We provide caring support at each of these steps and help coordinate your overall care as you move through them to make each transition easier.

Our providers have undergone extensive training specifically in caring for infants with complex medical conditions and their families. That level of expertise matters when it comes to your family’s mental well-being. Our team combines expertise in child development, infant mental health and parental mental health to provide the highest quality of care and make sure your bond with your child blossoms.

Cartoon image of a patient and doctor having a telehealth call.

Keeping you safe, wherever you are

We're here when you need us with the same safe, high-quality care we've always offered, even during the pandemic. Now, in many cases, you can get that care without even leaving home because we offer virtual visits across every one of our specialties.

See if telehealth is right for your child