As much as we try to prepare you for your child’s hospital stay, there are certain things you might not learn until you get here. Parents of our current and former patients have been in your shoes and want to help, so they’ve shared a few things they wish they knew before their child’s stay.

I wish I knew it was always cold in the hospital.

The hospital is cold for a reason, but we know it can be uncomfortable if you’re not prepared. Be sure to bring what you need to stay warm while your child is cozy in bed. Our team is happy to provide you with a blanket if needed.

I wish I knew the cafeteria’s hours.

Our cafeteria is open from 5:30 a.m. to 3 a.m. There are also other places to eat in the hospital and nearby.

I wish I knew there were washing machines available.

We have washing machines available on the 4th, 8th, 9th, 10th and 11th floors. If you need one but aren’t on those floors, ask your care team for help.

I wish I knew more about when friends and family can visit.

Visitation policies can differ slightly from unit to unit, depending on your child’s health and the time of year. Be sure to ask your nurse if you have concerns about who can visit and when. All visitors are required to stop by the reception desk in the main lobby for a badge. Your sticker badge will expire, so be sure to update it as needed.

I wish I knew I had access to a social worker.

Our social workers are there to help guide you through all the complicated medical information you’ll be working through. This includes:

  • Insurance concerns (private, Medicaid and other)
  • Billing
  • Support after going home
  • Support group information
  • Transportation home
  • Where to stay

If you need help with any of those things, or any other kind of support, you can ask your nurse for a social worker visit.

I wish I knew where to stay near the hospital.

If you live outside Mecklenburg County and need a place to stay, The Ronald McDonald House and The Hospitality House are both available for families of patients at little to no charge. There are also many hotels in the area.

See a few of your lodging options near Levine Children’s Hospital.

I wish I knew what was in the library.

Our medical librarian can help you find information about your child’s condition, medications, treatments and procedures. This is more reliable than just searching online for answers. We also offer other reading materials and access to business tools, like a copier and fax machine.

I wish I knew a volunteer can sit with my child when I need to take a shower or get something to eat.

Volunteers are available and round throughout the day to help however needed. They can get items you may need in the room, from toiletries to toys, and can babysit for short periods while you take care of yourself. Talk to your nurse to learn more about requesting a volunteer.

I wish I knew how to recognize and praise our care team.

WOW Cards and Daisy Award nominations are two easy ways for you to recognize and praise your family’s care team. WOW Cards can be found at the nurses station, library and main lobby desk. You can also use the GetWell network on your TV to submit a compliment and complete a Daisy Award form without leaving your child’s room. From the homepage, click on the tile that says Share a Compliment.

I wish I knew when special events around the hospital were happening.

Special events occur often, and so do regularly scheduled events like bingo or movie night. Be sure to check the informational TVs in your unit, calendars in the elevators, and channel 99 on your TV for all special events occurring in Seacrest Studios. Learn more about the activities and events available for your child.

I wish I knew how to access my child’s records online.

Through MyAtriumHealth, a parent or guardian of a pediatric patient can request to access and manage their child’s personal health information until the child is 13. This gives you access to their medical records, scheduled appointments, medications, test results and more. Log in and click on settings and request family access. You will need your child’s medical record number or last 4 digits of their social security number.

If you are a patient of Atrium Health and need a MyAtriumHealth account sign up here.

If you are not a patient at Atrium Health but need access to your child’s health information please contact MyAtriumHealth Support toll-free during business hours at 855-799-0044.

I wish I knew who was part of my care team.

We want you to know all the different team members who are caring for your child. You can use the GetWell network on your TV to see the members of your child’s care team. You can also take a look at the communication whiteboard in your child’s room for that day’s specific team members. My care team speaks in acronyms.

I wish I knew what they meant.

You’re an important part of any conversation about your child’s health. We want you to understand everything being said about your child and the care they’re getting. The easiest way to learn what your care team is saying is to ask. You can also learn what some of the most common hospital terms mean through the GetWell network on your TV.

I wish I knew how I could give back to the hospital.

If you’d like more information on how to get involved in fundraising activities and events, or you’d like to make a monetary donation, please contact the Atrium Health Foundation at 704-355-4048 or visit atriumhealthfoundation.org. To donate clothes for babies born early, entertainment services or toys, call our special events coordinator at 704-381-3257.

Learn more about how you can give back to Levine Children’s Hospital.

I wish I knew I could tell someone when something isn’t right in the facility.

If you see something that needs to be fixed or made more environmentally friendly, use the GetWell network on your TV. From the homepage, click on the tile that says Tell Us How We Can Help.

I wish I knew when my child’s doctors were coming around.

Rounding times, wait times and daily schedules can vary from day to day. Please ask your nurse for help.

I wish I knew more about security, shuttle options and parking.

For your safety, security is available to walk you to your car. Call 704-355-3333. A courtesy shuttle is available to get you to your car or to another facility. Call 704-355-3333. We also have convenient parking and free parking for patients and their families. See our map to find out where to park.

I wish I knew about the playrooms and garden.

We have playrooms located on the 8th, 9th, 10th and 11th floors. The hours vary from floor to floor and are posted on the playroom doors. Any patient or sibling can visit a playroom with a play passport from your nurse. We also have outdoor patios on the 1st floor and an outdoor discovery garden on the 12th floor. From gardens to gifts, learn other

ways we can help make your child’s stay brighter.