Gravens Conference

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A love letter to conference registrants

Dear Gravens Nation,

The Co-Chairs and I were so hoping for a hybrid event. Unfortunately, all indicators suggest that a virtual meeting is the best option. So, please join us at The Gravens Conference’s maiden voyage into the virtual “Environment of Care”.  The revised dates are March 3, 4, 10, and 17, 2021.  

The conference will provide you with the latest state-of-the-art research, evidence-based knowledge in neurodevelopmental science, developmental care, healthcare design, and family support, and best practices.  

The virtual environment will include networking opportunities, posters, and exhibit hall.  

For those of you that had planned to go to the Sheraton Sand Key in Clearwater, FL: the hotel is keeping a small block of rooms at the group rate. Read the section on lodging (venue). I will organize an onsite “Watch Party” for March 3-4, 2021, if 1) at least 20 people are interested, and 2) the University of South Florida allows me to do so.  (In-person meetings are restricted right now.) IF the Watch Party comes to fruition, please know that masks are required, as is physical distancing and hand sanitation. There are Sunshine Breaks between each presentation to allow for leaving the meeting room.  

Sincerely, Bobbi Rose (nrose@usf.edu)  

p.s. How apropos that the 2021 theme is Resiliency and Change. May we embrace it and be better for it on the other side.   

Conference Background

In a perfect world, there would be no need for a NICU. Yet our reality is that babies continue to be born too sick, too soon, and with medical conditions requiring hospitalization. Activities in the NICU have a profound impact on the babies, their families and the staff. What you do matters. Your work has the potential to impact a neonate’s health outcome, as well as that of the family and staff in the NICU.  

Since the 1980s, neonatal care providers have worked to mitigate the stress experienced by babies, parents and providers. Doing so has involved change and its inherent struggles, but eventually we have adapted our NICU culture, policies and approach. We strive to nurture the developmental needs of babies and the emotional and informational needs of their parents through evidence-based knowledge in neurodevelopmental science, developmental care, healthcare design, and family support. This work continues at The 34th Annual Gravens Conference.

Target Audience

This program has been developed to meet the educational needs of healthcare practitioners such as Neonatologists, Pediatricians, Psychologists, Occupational Therapists, Neonatal Nurses (RNs, NNPs, ARNPs), Family Support Staff, Architects, Hospital Administration, Infant & Child Development Specialists,  Social Workers & Counselors, and other professionals working with high-risk infants, their families or their physical environment.

Learning Objectives

As a result of participating in this activity, the learner should be able to:

  • Identify current research that contributes to understanding neurodevelopment, neuroprotection, emotional and mental health, and the role of nurturing in the NICU.
  • Interpret the impact of NICU-related practices on parents, infants, and staff. 
  • Compare and contrast several ‘best practices’ for improving family support policies 
  • Develop strategies for applying current information to clinical practice in the NICU environment.
  • Integrate strategies for cultural change in the NICU, including intrapersonal, interpersonal, clinical, environmental, and system change. 
  • Integrate strategies for cultural change in the NICU, including intrapersonal, interpersonal, clinical, environmental, and system change.
  • Describe the various components to consider when renovating or creating new construction of a NICU.

Learning Objectives apply to all professions in the target audience.

Competencies to be addressed

Patient Care and Procedural Skills; Medical knowledge; Systems-based practice; Professionalism; Interpersonal and communication skills

2021 Faculty