See how we are transforming care for infants and families around the world.
The trajectory of improvement is powered by members of the neonatal community of practice who rigorously adhere to data-driven quality improvement.
Take Action to Follow Through
The VON Take Action to Follow Through grant program supported the development of innovative programs to confront health inequities. The Potentially Better Practices at the core of the grant program are central to the VON improvement programs – NICQ and iNICQ – focusing on improving care for all infants and families.
Take Action to Follow Through programs include:
NICU-Specific Medical-Legal Partnership Provides Unique Opportunities to Help Families
Legal problems are health problems for Dr. Ladawna Gievers and Dr. Lauren Mutrie, the co-directors of Doernbecher Children’s NICU medical-legal partnership (MLP). The pilot program, which launched in October 2020, is the first NICU-specific MLP in the United States. It is designed to identify legal issues that impact the health of the family – such as housing concerns or domestic conflict – and address them through legal processes. The ultimate goal for the program is to provide long-term stability for infants and families.
CHOI Standardizes Care during Transport for <32 Week Infants
As part of VON’s Critical Transitions internet-based quality improvement collaborative, the team at Children’s Hospital of Illinois worked with referring hospitals to standardize communications and care during transport to improve respiratory, nutritional, and developmental outcomes in <32 week neonates.
Learning What Really Matters to Parents
A neonatal intensive care unit in Portland, Oregon participating in VON’s internet-based quality improvement collaborative improved care for premature infants by asking parents what they needed.
The process of Experience-Based Co-Design helped the team prioritize and focus areas of improvement.
Multidisciplinary team at University of Virginia improves admission temperature
The NICU team and entire division of neonatology at the University of Virginia benchmark key metrics in the VON Annual Report against similar centers.
After noticing the center was performing in the highest quartile of VON centers for hypothermia, the neonatology team partnered with colleagues in obstretics and nurse leaders to reduce admission hypothermia (<36.5 °C) from 63% to 30% for infants <35 weeks gestation, and moderate hypothermia from 29% to 9%.
Improved clinical prognosis and family counseling
When Boston Children’s Hospital surgeons and clinical teams discuss treatment options for neonates with necrotizing enterocolitis, they use information gleaned from thousands of similar infants in Vermont Oxford Network’s Very Low Birth Weight and Expanded databases.
By turning vast amounts of data into actionable improvement, we continue to improve the care of high-risk newborns and find better ways to treat infants and their families in a more efficient and effective continuum of care.
Reduction in Exchange Transfusions for Acute Bilirubin Encephalopathy
The neonatal team at Tikur Anbessa Hospital in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia recognized they were performing exchange transfusions for acute bilirubin encephalopathy at an alarming rate, two to three times per day.
Through a failure analysis, neonatal team members and VON volunteers identified opportunities to improve identification of high-risk infants, surveillance, and monitoring efficacy of treatment.