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SPECIAL TOPIC COURSE (STC) – Persevering In The Face Of The Opioid Epidemic: A Passion For Family Centered NAS Care

It’s invaluable to learn from others’ experiences and data as your NICUs strive to improve NAS Care. During this month’s featured STC, the speakers will take you through one unit’s program development, outcomes, and more, including their focus on supporting each family without bias or judgment.

Course Title: Persevering in The Face of the Opioid Epidemic: A Passion for Family Centered NAS Care

Nichole Lensing, PT, DPT
Jennie Jacob, MSPT, CNT

Course Description: Opioid exposure in neonates continues to be a national epidemic with significant associated hospital costs and public health implications related to family integrity and infant development. The NICU at Banner University Medical Center – Tucson (BUMC-T) has changed its model of care by utilizing the family as the primary treatment for the substance exposed infant. By keeping the family unified, we have decreased the need for postnatal opioids, reduced length of stay (LOS), decreased costs related to hospitalization, and decreased foster care placements and its strain on public resources.

The program at BUMC-T, called Family Centered Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome Care (FC-NAS), was based on Yale New Haven’s Eat Sleep Console NAS program. Families stay with the infant and provide all care, with support and education provided by the NICU team. Changing the culture of the NICU to support a family in transition is instrumental to success. The FC-NAS program identifies families as early in pregnancy as possible, works closely with community partners to ensure a successful and safe transition home, and continues developmental assessment in follow up clinic through the age of 3.

Updates will cover: program development, cost savings, community continuity and outreach, as well as outcomes. There will also be a focus on the importance of treating each family in our care independently and individually, without bias and judgment, to more successfully meet their needs.

Target Audience: OT, SLP, PT, RN, MD and Neonatal professionals

Level: Intermediate

CE Credit: 0.5 hour


  1. Identify opportunities for program development of a family centered NAS care program in other units.
  2. Describe the benefits of keeping families unified for positive long-term outcomes.
  3. List current biases and changes needed in hospital culture to support families in transition to allow for individualized care.

Instructional Method: Recorded webinar with handouts. Learning assessment and course evaluation follow course.

Course Fee: $37 or FREE for NANT Members

Register: Click here to learn more or enroll.

What others are saying about this course:

“I found this presentation to be highly relevant. I was able to bring clinical information about what works and what doesn’t to our medical director/neo and it was well received.” – Kristen Groot, PT

“Love their passion and thought-provoking presentation with several ideas to bring back to my unit.” – Alicia Peeples, PT, CNT

“So glad we are changing the culture in this area! Love the “Eat, Sleep, Console” method and how involved the parents were”. – Paula Kline, OTR, CIMI