AUSTIN, Texas, Feb. 15, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Parents of the half a million babies admitted to neonatal intensive care in the United States each year face higher rates of depression, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorderi. To help parents through those difficult times, Hand to Hold today announces NICU Now, a free audio support series available at handtohold.org, on iTunes and Stitcher, with topics covering guilt, grief, anxiety, bonding and breastfeeding with a sick or medically fragile baby, and risk factors and warning signs for depression and more.
"Hand to Hold sees a gap in the system of care for NICU families, and we strive to develop timely, effective resources to meet the growing demand for family support in hospitals," said Kelli Kelley, Hand to Hold co-founder and executive director, whose son was born at 24 weeks and spent four months in neonatal intensive care. "The NICU Now podcast is readily and freely available for parents who may not have the time and resources to get the support they need from a support group or counselor."
Hosted by Kelley, NICU Now interviews health experts as well as families who have been through a NICU stay. Kelley and guests discuss the range of emotions and responses that parents have following a preterm birth such as challenges associated with bonding with a medically fragile child. Episodes also include interviews with parents including Tom and Kelley French, authors of Juniper, the Girl Who Was Born Too Soon, and bereaved mom Melissa Hinnant, founder of Grace and Lace.
"A NICU stay can be very isolating and parents may find it hard to attend support groups or be hesitant to talk openly with counselors. NICU Now will help them know they are not alone in their feelings and prepare them to be confident caregivers and advocates for their babies," says Katie Pendleton, LCSW.
NICU Now is based on Hand to Hold's support group curriculum developed to help hospitals meet National Perinatal Association guidelines for psychosocial support for parents whose babies are admitted to NICU. It is supported by a grant from Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals and produced by Hand to Hold, which is solely responsible for its content. Other sponsors include Prolacta Bioscience and Huggies.
About Hand to Hold
Hand to Hold is a national nonprofit that helps families before, during, and after NICU stays and infant loss by providing powerful resources for the whole family including in-hospital programs, articles and blogs, social networks, and trained peer mentors. Learn more at www.handtohold.org.
i Sources available upon request.
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SOURCE Hand to Hold