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INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — A pandemic problem led to a long-term solution for families with babies needing extra care.

It took a team effort between pediatricians and medical equipment providers and it’s all about empowering parents.

Bringing a baby home is a tough time for parents, whether that’s right after birth and health issues arise later or the infant is coming home from the neonatal intensive care unit.

An IU Health doctor recognized that these families were often asked to come to their doctor’s office for weekly weigh-ins. That’s because weight is a really important indicator of health and wellness with babies. Health care providers are not just watching pounds, but literally, each ounce can make a big difference. But those trips were made very difficult during the pandemic due to other children being out of school, but not allowed to attend the appointments and the added risk of exposing babies to public offices just for a weigh-in, so the pediatrician paired up with CareSource to create a program for families to get a free baby scale in their home to use and keep.

“This is seemingly a small thing, but it really does empower that family to get very critical, objection information that they can share with their health care team in order to again protect and help that baby thrive,” Dr. Cameual Wright, CareSource vice president and market chief medical officer, said.

Wright said parents can use the scales weekly or even daily to keep their own weight log for their baby, which can then be relayed to their care provider. It’s an item CareSource says will hopefully give some families peace of mind, but also help others identify problems as early as possible.

The effort to place scales in homes is something CareSource says they will continue to provide long into the future. All you need is an order from your care provider.