NICU parents are at a higher risk for postpartum depression, anxiety disorders and PTSD following a traumatic birth and NICU stay. The many stressors related to COVID-19 are compounding these risks as parents now face restricted visitation policies and have less access to family support services in their units.
For the past decade, Hand to Hold has provided resources and support to help parents navigate their NICU journey. Responding to the need for additional support for families at this time, Hand to Hold has launched Virtual Support Groups hosted by Family Support Specialists. Sponsored by Huggies®, the Virtual Support Groups are offered multiple times a week in both English and Spanish. In addition, families can request a peer mentor and be matched with a trained NICU graduate parent who has shared a similar birth experience as well as connect to other NICU families through Hand to Hold’s online communities. Hand to Hold also hosts multiple podcast channels for NICU families and NICU professionals many that relate directly to processing emotions related to COVID-19.
Please consider sharing these valuable resources with your NICU families as they need support now more than ever. You can print flyers to post in your unit about Hand to Hold’s Virtual Support Groups at handtohold.org/supportgroups or contact Tammy@handtohold.org to request printed postcards outlining Hand to Hold’s many resources.