Objective To describe a neonatal network in The Netherlands regarding the nursing collaboration between Neonatal Intensive Care Units (NICUs) on innovation and research.
In The Netherlands perinatal intensive care is highly organized in 10 centers spread over the country: >95% of premature infants (<32 weeks GA) are born in one of these centers. In 2006 a total of 4178 newborns were admitted in a NICU, yielding a mean admission rate of 418 per center (range, 255–578).(1) Each NICU has 1–2 satellite centers for post-intensive care management.
Methods Information is obtained from the National Perinatal Registration, a survey of working groups, interviews and from the national Dutch group ‘Innovation and Research’
Results Nursing staff in the 10 NICUs enjoy several ways of cooperation. One of the nationwide associations is the National Dutch group ‘Innovation and Research’ (I and R). Members of this group are nurse practioners, scientists in nursing research and nurse specialists from every participating NICU in The Netherlands. Frequency of meetings is 3 times per year. Goal of this group is in general promoting national nursing research projects and innovations regarding nursing issues.
A systematic review of evidence based recommendations for infant positioning was performed by all representatives of the Dutch NICUs to obtain data to develop an evidence based protocol regarding regular repositioning of the preterm infant in NICU to prevent cranial molding.
Conclusions Collaboration between NICUs is beneficial for patients and nursing staffs.