I am Jennifer Schooling; a specialised neonatal physiotherapist, based at the Jessop Wing, level 3 neonatal unit in Sheffield. My background is in childhood neuro-disability in a variety of settings. My current role on the neonatal unit is Clinical Lead Neonatal Developmental Physiotherapist; I have NIDCAP (Newborn Individualised Developmental Care and Assessment Programme) and NBO/NBAS certification and regularly use these approaches, alongside the medical model, with babies and families on the NICU and in follow up to 2 years. I work closely within multi professional teams based on the neonatal unit , the neonatal surgical unit at the Sheffield Children’s Hospital Trust and the Ryegate Child development centre to provide a comprehensive therapy service and smooth transition for babies and their families.
In addition to being a trainer with the Brazelton Centre I am on the faculty with FINE (Family and Infant Neurodevelopmental Education) to provide training for neonatal staff nationally and internationally. The FINE programme provides training at a variety of levels to a range of multi professional neonatal staff. The programme is holistic in its approach to promote caring for the preterm and sick newborn and their families, considering their individual and changing needs to support brain development, improved long term outcomes and family engagement. This programme compliments the Brazelton approach as it is founded on similar principles.
I thoroughly enjoy using the NBO on the neonatal unit and at early follow up in the clinic setting. It provides the opportunity to tune in to and learn about high-risk babies likes, preferences and personalities and supports their parents to learn more about their baby’s behaviour and their individual needs and competencies. As a strength based approach it is supportive in building parents confidence as they get to know their baby during this challenging time on the NICU and beyond.