Broward Health Medical Center is the first South Florida hospital to partner with the March of Dimes to offer its NICU Family Support® Program, providing additional information and support to families with babies in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU).

The hospital recently added a NICU coordinator to its staff, whose responsibilities will include administering this program, which offers parent education, staff education and other initiatives to improve the patient and family experience.

“Most NICU families are having a very different experience than they expected when welcoming their child to the world, and they are usually quite overwhelmed,” said Rose McKelvie, administrator of women’s & children’s services at Broward Health Medical Center. “Supplementing our staff with a NICU coordinator and launching this program enhances our ability to provide these families with compassionate guidance and support.”

In addition to a parent education curriculum, the program provides on-demand web series for hospital staff, including free CNEs and NICU Grand Round presentations on trending topics. The program also provides quality improvement consulting that positively impacts the patient experience and family-centered care, such as annual patient experience projects and connections to the network of NICU Family Support partner hospitals.

“Having a baby in the NICU can be overwhelming for the entire family,” said Kara Gilardi, senior director of NICU family support at March of Dimes. “The NICU Family Support® Program provides wrap-around support to empower, educate and support families when their baby needs NICU care. We are absolutely thrilled to begin partnership with the team at Broward Health Medical Center to improve the patient and family experience during their NICU journey.”