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developmental care, neonatal, neuroprotection


E-poster for the 18th World Federation of Occupational Therapy Congress.



The World Health Organization estimates that 15 million babies are born pre term every year.1 “Preterm infants have a high risk of cognitive, neuromotor, and neurosensory problems after discharge from the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU).2 The outcomes associated with pre term birth are influenced by early adverse experiences during critical care in a stressful NICU environment.3

Developmental care (DC) encompasses a broad array of interventions for developing infants which focus on minimizing the stress of the NICU.4 There are a number of approaches associated with DC The Universe of Developmental Care model describes five core measures of developmentally care.5

Despite availability of interventions and practice guidelines, staff/caregiver implementation of DC continues to be challenging, intermittent, and inconsistent between settings and even between individuals within the same setting.6 Every person who interacts with babies in the NICU ( family, therapists, medical providers) should be familiar with the core concepts of developmental (and neuroprotective) care, placing the baby at the center of all interaction.7

PURPOSE: To revise and validate a fidelity checklist for recording the quality and utilization of developmental care among NICU caregivers 8 during their routine care and for use in both high and low resourced countries

AIM 1: Revise the existing Checklist based on a comprehensive review and synthesis of the developmental care literature

AIM 2: Establish content validity of the revised