NCH BirthPlace Expands Classes to Update Grandparents
By Jean Amodea
When Stephanie Piver was asked in early 2009 to develop a comprehensive prenatal education program for the BirthPlace at North Naples Hospital, she kept the four classes offered prior to her arrival: Expectant Parent, Sibling, Infant CPR and Breastfeeding.
But Piver is a visionary. She obtained feedback from parents on what they wanted, and she also shared her ideas. This approach opened the doors for family members of all ages—including grandparents—to build on prior knowledge, learn new safety and parenting lessons and have a positive experience.
“The opinions of our new and expecting parents and prospective clients were what really mattered, so a short survey of class participants was designed so parents could tell us what classes and services they wanted,” Piver said. “That initial survey prompted the first changes and encouraged us to continue expanding the classes.”
All instructors hold certifications in the areas in which they teach, which ensures consistently top-quality presentations.
“One of the classes unique to our facility is the Grandparents’ class, which came from comments from a new dad who told me that he wished there was some class that his mother could take, so that she could hear about SIDS and Safe Sleep,” Piver said. “From that comment, the conception of a new class was formulated.”
Piver has watched how the class impacts grandparents who will be caring for new grandchildren and how it helps parents.
“The grandparents’ class is helpful because they are going to be watching their grandchildren or caring for them on a regular basis,” she said.
Naples’ grandparents also sign up for classes to ready themselves for family visits. Some of the topics cover child safety caps on medications, the inquisitiveness of kids and how quickly they move, what might choke a child and why children are likely to choke—which, Piver said, is that children under the age of five explore by putting things in their mouth.
Possibly the most important aspect of why the grandparents’ class is so popular is that a lot has changed in the world since they first cared for infant children. For example, to understand the evidence-based reasoning for changing behavior, Piver has a startling statistic.
“Since we started the Back to Sleep campaign in 1993, SIDS deaths have been reduced in the U.S. by 47%,” Piver said. “We don’t just give them the information, we explain why and that our recommendations come from the American Academy of Pediatrics.”
For more information call the NCH BirthPlace Education Services at (239)552-7396 or (239)552-8316. Past Health Matters
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