Back to Annual Meeting Page
American Public Health Association
133rd Annual Meeting & Exposition
December 10-14, 2005
Philadelphia, PA
APHA 2005
5152.0: Wednesday, December 14, 2005 - 2:50 PM

Abstract #116930

A Photo Is Worth A Thousand Words: March of Dimes Builds a Support Community

Lori Gunther, MA, March of Dimes New York State Chapter, 80 Wolfe Road, Ste 106, Albany, NY 12205, 518-453-0474, lgunther@marchofdimes.com, Liza G. Cooper, LMSW, Chapter Programs, March of Dimes, 1275 Mamaroneck Avenue, White Plains, NY 10605, Patricia M. Leece, MS, Upstate New York Chapter, March of Dimes Birth Defects Foundation, 80 Wolf Road, Suite 106, Albany, NY 12205, Susan Clifford, Chapter Program Support, March of Dimes, 1275 Mamaroneck Avenue, White Plains, NY 10605, and Scott D. Berns, MD, MPH, National Office, March of Dimes, 1275 Mamaroneck Avenue, White Plains, NY 10605.

Each year, over 400,000 babies are admitted to a Newborn Intensive Care Unit (NICU) in the U.S. The hospitalization of a newborn in a NICU can be one of the most overwhelming experiences for a parent. One of the most treasured forms of support for a NICU family is the gift of a photo keepsake of their child. This image serves as a celebration of their baby's life, a recognition of parenthood, a remembrance of all a family has been through, a reminder of a special milestone or moment, and for those whose baby never goes home from the NICU, a treasured memento forever. March of Dimes NICU Family Support, a national initiative to support NICU families nationwide, brought together a community of NICU families and NICU professionals, who shared their experiences, identified a need and built the innovative Photo Keepsake Program. Woven into this effort was the design of a new community of NICU families who provide each other hope, understanding and support. Through graduate NICU parent photographer opportunities and NICU scrapbooking nights, former and current NICU parents have been brought together into a community of support. This presentation will be the second of a panel and provides a detailed look at how a community in Albany, NY collaborated to build the Photo Keepsake Program, what it is, and how, in turn, it has been responsible for the creation of new, supportive communities.

Learning Objectives:

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

I wish to disclose that I have NO financial interests or other relationship with the manufactures of commercial products, suppliers of commercial services or commercial supporters.

March of Dimes NICU Family Support: Incorporating and Building Communities

The 133rd Annual Meeting & Exposition (December 10-14, 2005) of APHA