The global premature baby NGO LittleBigSouls has joined forces with The Herald First Choice Kids and Baby Expo to present a parent symposium, Preemie & Me, at the expo next month.
Port Elizabeth dietitian Annatjie Smith and event organiser Linda Harwood, in conjunction with Natus Newborn Care, have put together a programme from 9am to 1pm on Friday, October 7, at the Boardwalk Exhibition Level, which is also the venue for the Kids and Baby Expo.
The international head of LittleBigSouls, Yvonne Igweh, will introduce the seminar, which will feature talks from a range of professionals in the field. of premature baby care.
One of the highlights will be a talk on skin-to- skin contact by Jill Bergman, the author of Hold Your Prem, a workbook on skin-to- skin contact for parents of prem babies.
Bergman has made four films on premature care, and trains nursing staff and hospitals in this field. She is married to Dr Nils Berman, who also specialises in “kangaroo” mother care where babies are kept close to the mother’s body with skin contact.
Neonatal Care Unit
The line-up also includes a section on how to protect development while a baby is still in the neonatal care unit (NCU):
Infection control for jaundice and thermo-regulation by registered nurse Judy Moore. She will also talk on technology in the neonatal intensive care unit (Nicu) and what is available to the baby and parents.
Preventative measures to help the neuro-development of the preemie by physiotherapist Diaan Jooste.
The importance of “suck, swallow, breathe” with a focus on how to overcome swallowing problems to help your baby by speech, language and hearing therapist Jahna Pheiffer.
The wonders of breast milk by dietitian Robyn Rose Potgieter.
When baby comes home
The second part of the seminar covers life after baby comes home:
“Sense-able” development and red flags for sensory processing disorder, by occupational therapist Selmari Potgieter.
The building blocks for successful motor development by physiotherapist Liesel Els.
The symposium is aimed not only at expectant parents and parents of premature and multiple birth babies but also at health professionals.
Harwood said the registration cost of R250 included a goodie bag, tea and lunch as well as a waiver of the R40 entry fee for the adjacent Kids and Baby Expo.
Further information on The Herald First Choice Kids and Baby Expo, which runs from October 7-9, and the Preemie and Me Parent Symposium from Harwood, 083-310-0750, harwoodpre@worldonlne. co.za or Smith, 082-824-0590, firstname.lastname@example.org.