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Small wonders: a change programme to empower parents to be the cornerstone of their sick and premature infant's care
  1. A Baum
  1. Best Beginnings, London, UK

Abstract

Sick and preterm infants are at high risk of sub-optimal physical and psychological development. Current research highlights the pivotal role that parents could play in minimizing early risk factors and secure better life chances for these infants, yet research also describes how parents feel disengaged from their infants and also experience significant anxiety. There is an urgent need for a change management program within NICUs to increase parental involvement in ways that will improve infant health outcomes, for example by increased breastfeeding and kangaroo-care, and also improve parental confidence.

Best Beginnings have previously developed a change management methodology using their DVD ‘From Bump to Breastfeeding’ which involved extensive stakeholder engagement and consultation with end-users and health-care professionals. Results of an independent evaluation demonstrated improved perceptions and increased breastfeeding rates. The DVD is now embedded in the NHS care pathway. We are now applying this evidence-based methodology to enhance non-clinical care in NICUs. Independent research commissioned by Best Beginnings has identified a need for a DVD to address this issue among both parents and healthcare professionals to help drive change. The ‘Small Wonders’ DVD will be the first resource of its kind to improve health outcomes for vulnerable infants by empowering parents to be the cornerstone of their infant's care. This presentation will describe the innovative change management methodology, the development of the ‘Small Wonders’ DVD, and will discuss how this resource can be embedded in NICUs to enable paediatricians and neonatal nurses to better support parents to deliver optimal non-clinical care.

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