Better Conversations Save Lives
“When I was sick, I was scared. I was scared I was going to lose my baby and my home. If someone had talked to me differently—if they had been honest with me about my condition and treatment, if they made sure I didn’t feel judged and offered me help—things might have gone differently. I would have been more honest; I would have gone to my appointments and gotten the help I needed. But I was just too scared.”
- Samantha, parent partner for the National Network of Perinatal Quality Collaboratives
Samantha, a mother and survivor of opioid misuse, illustrates why centering conversations around families’ needs and experiences can change health outcomes. Keep reading for resources and ideas on shifting conversations about breastfeeding, safe sleep and patient-provider care.
Listen and Learn, Don’t Dictate
Telling mothers to breastfeed isn’t enough. Pausing and really listening lets mothers share the real challenges they face. Once health professionals understand those challenges, they can provide individualized, realistic support. That’s why we’re devoting an upcoming webinar to helping health professionals have these meaningful conversations.
Interested in making the webinar as valuable as possible? Complete our survey on the challenges you’ve heard mothers share. And be sure to sign up for our mailing list to receive the webinar announcement.
Improve Education, Change Outcomes
Families face so much confusion about safe sleep practices, from conflicting public images to contradictory online articles. Better education through supportive conversations can help prevent thousands of infant deaths a year. NICHQ’s safe sleep video quiz, How Safe Sleep Savvy Are You?, is a teaching tool to inspire those conversations so health professionals can address the confusion and save babies.
Interested in more safe sleep conversation strategies? View this article on building trust and addressing disparities.
Tap into Family Advisors
The more pediatric practices know about the families they serve, the better their services will be. A patient and family advisory council, PFAC for short, brings patients and providers together to engage in conversations around improving service delivery. This article gives you four steps to get started.
Let's Work Together
Are you interested in using these change ideas to improve children’s health in a population, state or healthcare setting? Contact NICHQ to discuss our services that support:
- Strategies for identifying partners and getting buy-in
- Tools used to track data and enhance collaboration
- Training on methods to support a culture of improvement
From supporting individual organizations to national programs, NICHQ’s vast change management experience helps us customize the best solution for you.
Join our email network of healthcare and public health professionals, parents, providers and stakeholders who drive transformative change in the systems impacting children’s health. We’ll send you expert opinions, invitations for free webinars and tools that support quality improvement. Together, we can help every child achieve their optimal health.
What People Are Saying
Being a parent partner for NICHQ ...has been a pure honor. I would encourage anyone that has the opportunity to work on a NICHQ project to take advantage of it. Working with them has opened many doors for me in the medical field.
It has been an honor to work with NICHQ as a Parent Faculty member. I admire how NICHQ continues to center their work around the people directly impacted by it: families and children. They actively work to include these voices throughout project implementation, ensuring that policies remain grounded in patient experiences and feedback. The expertise and professionalism of NICHQ staff has meant that I always feel supported, and confident that all stake holders are included in the process.
At the beginning we thought that it'd be another project or another thing to do in our list of things we're supposed to do. But actually what I've learned is this is a better way to do things—a faster, better and effective way. You have to have a goal and objectives. When you work through the process we've been learning at NICHQ, everything is very efficient.
Participation in this project has uncovered new desires for me personally, and for our hospital and community. We are making progress in the little and big things, and changing the way a baby is welcomed into the world step by step. I am so thankful for the Best Fed Beginnings team, the opportunity to gain insight from other hospitals, and the chance to serve with my local hospital. With the drive of this collaborative, we can change the health of our world, one baby at a time.
Being involved with NICHQ has been a career-changing and life-altering experience in many ways. Quality improvement methodology is not additive to my work, it influences how I do my daily work.
For me, NICHQ is uniquely positioned to support complex, system-based efforts to improve child health and healthcare, locally and on a national scale. NICHQ helped my teams succeed by supporting collaboration, information management, and continuous learning. With NICHQ's help, the whole of our work was much greater than the sum of each of our individual efforts!
From the very first meeting, they embraced what we're trying to do in Texas and never missed a beat... It's a pretty well-oiled machine and it's been exciting to work with them.
Participating in NICHQ's Improving Children's Vision project has facilitated a rich opportunity to pursue robust quality improvement strategies to enhance early childhood vision health in Wyoming. [We] appreciate the expertise provided by the leadership team and the opportunity to share ideas and feedback with other states in the Collaboratory.
NICHQ provided me with the requisite foundation to conduct meaningful quality improvement that drives sustainable change...Collaborating with NICHQ on sickle cell disease has been hugely rewarding and highly productive. The leadership and staff at NICHQ have great vision and clear follow-through. They genuinely listen to their partners. They are receptive to different perspectives, and they always put the unique needs of children at the forefront of their work.
Working with NICHQ, I have been able to assist communities all over New York State with their breastfeeding care efforts. The NICHQ staff is experienced, organized and thorough, ensuring each interpersonal interaction is maximally engaging and productive. Because of the way change efforts are organized, I find myself learning new procedural and educational techniques, and even more about my own field! Thanks to NICHQ for including me on this interesting ride.
NICHQ’s role in coordinating these grantees working on improving sickle cell care and making an agenda that at least tries to push for improved care for all of these patients is very important. The role has been not been very well-served and NICHQ, in my mind, has the experience and staff expertise to bring to sickle cell disease the sort of rigor in methods development and analysis of outcomes to move the bar of caring for people with sickle cell disease several notches up.