iNICQ: The Ins and Outs of Neonatal Care – Faculty

The Ins and Outs of Neonatal Care: Improving Critical Transitions for Every Newborn

Core Curriculum

Heather Kaplan, MD, MSCE

Dr. Heather Kaplan, Associate Professor of Pediatrics and faculty in the Perinatal Institute and The James M. Anderson Center for Health Systems Excellence at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, is a prominent neonatologist and Quality Improvement scientist who will be leading this important 3-year initiative. She brings a wealth of knowledge, experience, and passion to this work having recently completed a statewide quality improvement project focused on improving complex medical discharges with the Ohio Perinatal Quality Collaborative (NICU Graduates project). Dr. Kaplan is excited to focus on all transitions, large and small, including admission, handoffs, transition to home (simple and complex) as well as all of the key transitions that happen at every stage of care.


Jeffrey Meyers, MD

Dr. Jeffrey Meyers is an Assistant Professor at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry.  He has served previously as the Associate Medical Director, is the Director of Newborn Quality Sciences, and was recently appointed Medical Director of the NICU at Golisano Children’s Hospital in 2017.  He has been an active participant in the New York State Perinatal Quality Collaborative, and has experience leading a regional quality improvement collaborative among several NICUs as well as many local quality improvement initiatives across Golisano Children’s Hospital and in the NICU.


Wendy Timpson, MD, MEd

Dr. Timpson is a Neonatologist and the Associate Director of Quality of Quality Improvement at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and a Visiting Scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. A former educator, Dr. Timpson followed a Master’s Degree in early childhood education with medical school, pediatrics residency and fellowship in neonatal perinatal medicine at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. Her academic focus is on utilization of rigorous quality improvement methodology to optimize family centered care and patient safety. Her current research is concentrated on understanding and reducing the burden of alarms in the NICU. She leads a team at MIT to analyze high-resolution waveform data from bedside cardiorespiratory monitors in order to better understand epidemiologic, clinical and work-flow factors that drive alarm burden. Her team hopes to leverage ‘big data’ to identify modifiable factors that drive oxygenation in the preterm population. They utilize near real time cardiorespiratory trend data to rapid-cycle test and implement changes to optimize oxygenation and decrease nuisance alarms, with the goal of safely mitigating excessive alarm burden for neonates and their families.

Intensive Curriculum

Howard Cohen, MD

Dr. Howard Cohen has long contributed to the VON Worldwide Community of Practice. He has thirty-eight years practicing neonatology in both academic and community NICU settings, and has held faculty positions at University of Illinois College of Medicine and Oregon Health Sciences University.  He has actively participated in multiple quality improvement collaboratives and projects as well as hospital and practice-based administrative positions as Clinical Director of Quality Improvement and Patient Safety Officer. Dr. Cohen is also a member of the VON Database Advisory Committee.


Marybeth Fry, MEd

The 2004 birth of Marybeth’s daughter at 28 weeks gestation and subsequent three month NICQ stay introduced her to a world she never knew existed and she wanted other NICU families to know they weren’t alone. In January of 2008, Marybeth became an Akron Children’s Hospital Parent Mentor and Volunteer and began visiting NICU families each week as a graduate parent. She also became involved in NICU FACT (Family Action Collaborative Team), a group of NICU graduate families and staff working together to support NICU families and promote family-centered care in the unit. Marybeth attended her first VON Conference with the Akron Children’s Team in spring of 2010 and has been fortunate enough to attend every meeting with the team.

In January 2013, Marybeth secured a paid parent position at Akron Children’s Hospital as the NICU Family Care Coordinator. This amazing opportunity has allowed her to be even more actively involved in furthering family-centered care and to see many of her volunteer projects come to fruition.