Pennsylvania Hospital founded a new Intensive Care Nursery (ICN) Family Advisory Council this year as a way for former patient families to work with current patient families and inter-disciplinary hospital staff members to promote patient and family centered care in the unit. The council’s goals are to provide advisement for hospital staff, mentorship and support for patient families, and to inform, educate, and fundraise for the ICN.
Several events were held to coincide with the Council’s founding: a newborn and preemie clothing drive and a fundraiser for the ICN were held in the Elm Garden Cafeteria and a Parents of Preemies Day was held in the ICN unit on 2 Cathcart. The Parents Day event was a fun and festive, informal meet-and-greet between over 20 “graduate families” – families of former ICN preemie patients – and those whose babies are currently being cared for in the unit. There are currently up to 15 families actively involved in the steering committee of the ICN Family Advisory Council.
A photographer was available to take free portraits of families whose babies were currently in the ICN. Refreshments were provided by the ICN Family Advisory Council members and Sending Love and Hope, a local charity for preemies and recovering mothers on prescribed bed rest after giving birth.
“It was great to see the graduates and their parents return to give hope to our current patient families,” said Michelle Ferrant, MSN, RNC-NIC, CBC, chair, ICN Bereavement Committee, and co-chair, ICN Family Advisory Council. “As families who have experienced the ICN journey first hand, they have unique insights to share. I was glad to be able to be a part of the Family Advisory Council and bring this event to the unit."