NICU Initiatives

Partnering with more than 70 hospitals, NICUs and families in order to improve the NICU family experience, through education, program initiatives, and strategic partnerships.

All babies and families deserve the best possible start

NICU Family Support®

When a baby needs NICU care, the NICU Family Support® program is there to empower, educate and support their families.

Not every pregnancy goes as planned, and unfortunately, too many families find their babies in the NICU due to preterm birth, birth defects, surgical or genetic conditions or other diagnosis. This time can be stressful and overwhelming for families. That’s why NFS offers support and education they need during this difficult time.

Since 2001, NICU Family Support® has partnered with hospitals across the country to educate NICU staff and support families through evidence-based programs and a variety of online and in-person resources while babies are in the NICU and during their transition home.

Parents in NICU

Even so, the best laid plans don’t always turn out as we hoped, and many babies will spend their earliest days in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) due to a preterm birth, birth defects, surgical or genetic conditions, or other diagnosis. For them, March of Dimes’ NICU Initiatives offer multiple ways to access the support and education they need to help improve the patient experience.

Providing education and information to families is one of the most meaningful ways to engage them in creating a positive experience while they are in the NICU. NICU Family Support® provides multiple ways for families to receive critical information. 

Print resources include “The NICU Journey” and “In the NICU for a Shorter Stay” booklets and an evaluated parent education curriculum of 7 topics. Resources are reviewed annually for medical accuracy and health literacy standards.

NICU Family Support is committed to increasing the knowledge of NICU staff by providing on-going educational opportunities. Web-based, on demand, presentations from the March of Dimes Training Institute are provided, which include free CNEs. Additionally, NICU Grand Rounds and Leading Practice Workshops are provided on current NICU trends (CNEs not available). Through these offerings, NICU staff receive tools to work effectively with families and each other.

Additional support resources

Our intent is that the powerful impact of this program will last far into the future, and families will know that they are supported when they needed it most. 

For purchase by hospitals

In the NICU for a Shorter Stay

Topics include answers to common questions about baby's NICU stay, feeding in the NICU, getting ready to take baby home from the NICU, and taking care of baby at home.