Supporting Infants Through End of Life: Developmental Comfort Care & Memory Making
Child Life Specialists are often called on to guide families through the memory making process at end of life. However, patients in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit are typically hospitalized for quite some time and end of life care often begins prior to the initiation of memory making opportunities. Following the principles of developmental end of life comfort care, Child Life Specialists can collaborate with the interdisciplinary team to enhance and celebrate little lives for whatever time they have left. Through careful planning with patient families and unit education, this Child Life Specialist works to create carefully curated environments for her patients to thrive as they approach end of life while creating beautiful memories for the patient and family alike.
Suggested Domain: Intervention
1. Participants will be able to describe the role of Certified Child Life Specialists in end of life care and memory making.
2. Participants will be able to identify goals of neonatal, developmental comfort care at end of life.
3. Participants will be able to describe ways to educate and effectively communicate with the multidisciplinary team regarding infant’s comfort care goals and family memory making wishes.
4. Participants will be able to articulate ways to involve patient’s family members in neonatal comfort care at end of life.
Certified Child Life Specialist
This speaker graduated with a masters degree from The University of Georgia, and completed her Child Life Clinical Internship at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta in Cardiology and Inpatient Oncology. Following completion of her internship, she was hired as the Certified Child Life Specialist for the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Egleston. For the past four years, she has worked in the NICU focusing her day-to-day efforts on meeting the developmental and psychosocial needs of infants and their families. Throughout her career this speaker has focused her efforts on increasing support for hospitalized infants by advocating on their behalf to meet their needs specifically within the realm of procedural support and end of life care.
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