Course Description: The evidence base for benefits of breastmilk feeding for the NICU population continues to grow. Despite the added complexity of providing breastmilk and feeding at the breast, improved short-term and long-term outcomes fuel the drive to support NICU families desiring to do so. NICU clinicians operate in a world of objective day-to-day nutritive intake volumes based on assumptions about optimal growth. Because feeding at the breast introduces uncertain intake volumes, this route of feeding is often not supported or encouraged with complex feeders. Additionally, the functional differences between breastfeeding and bottle feeding have been under appreciated. Ultrasound imaging of feeding at the breast has elucidated the wider latch required, as well as the unique mechanics of the tongue for effective breastfeeding compared to bottle feeding. Because neonatal therapists focus on neurodevelopment, we are in a unique position to support breastfeeding families throughout their NICU stay. By combining a family-centered framework with individual assessment of the infant, neonatal therapists can provide each mother-infant dyad with appropriate expectations for breastfeeding milestones, identify progressions to the next stage, and troubleshoot breastfeeding challenges. Multidisciplinary collaboration among infants, parents, therapists, clinicians, dietitians, lactation consultants, and nursing is essential to optimal breastfeeding support.
Target Audience: OT, SLP, PT, RN, MD, and Neonatal professionals
Instructional Method: Recorded webinar, lecture, videos, case studies, and handouts. Learning assessment and course evaluation follow course.
Course Completion Requirements: The learner must view the entire webinar, complete the course evaluation and complete the post webinar learning assessment with at least 80% to receive education credit. Login and logout times will be recorded and documented.
Following completion of this course physical therapists, nurses and other disciplines will receive a certificate of completion and a zip file containing information necessary to submit to their individual state for education credit. Zip file will include course bibliography. Physical therapists are responsible for knowing and adhering to their state’s deadlines, rules and regulations.