Friday Fast Five: Meet Angela Casey

Each month we interview individuals associated with the Australasian NIDCAP Training Centre and the broader NIDCAP Federation International (NFI) community, asking them five questions that explore their association with our unit and NIDCAP. This month, meet Angela Casey, Nurse Manager and Australasian NIDCAP Training Centre Board member in Grace Centre for Newborn Intensive care.

What is your role in the neonatal unit? My role is the Nurse Manager and Department Co-Head in the Grace Centre for Newborn Intensive Care Unit. I have worked in Grace since 2011 and from the very first week in the role, Kaye Spence introduced me to NIDCAP philosophy. I have worked alongside staff within the unit with special mention to two individuals that have really been the inspiration behind the NIDCAP Training Centre -  Nadine Griffiths and Kaye Spence. With their commitment, extended knowledge and dedication for Neuroprotective care, they have formed a team around them that has made the Australasian Training Centre possible, which was once thought of as a dream made into a reality. It has been an amazing journey that has been exhausting, worthwhile, difficult yet rewarding and  feel so privileged to have worked so closely with the NIDCAP team and these two inspiring Neonatal Nursing Leaders!

How are you involved in the Australasian NIDCAP Training Centre in GCNC? I have been very involved in the strategic planning, leadership direction and the overall set up of the Training Centre. I’m currently a member on the NIDCAP Training Centre Board.

In your opinion how does NIDCAP and neuroprotective care potentially benefit neonates, families and staff? I believe in NIDCAP and the foundations that have been supported by the NIDCAP federation and the Grace Centre. What I’m really interested in is that the NIDCAP philosophy is family focused and provides an individualised approach to every and every single  baby and family. The families are supported by the trained staff to ensure their stay within the Neonatal Intensive Care has a care plan that can also be utilised at home when they are discharged. Educating families on how to read the cues of their baby are invaluable skills to have to ensure optimal supported neuroprotective care is provided.

What would you like people to know about NIDCAP and neuroprotective care? I think all units caring for babies and their families should have the opportunity to be exposed to the NIDCAP philosophy and the benefits/outcomes of neuroprotective care. Having  access to established education programs for Neuroprotective care such as the Fine Training is essential for the foundation of NIDCAP. There are great resources within the Training centre and on the website to be accessed however we need to spread the word and ensure we have the continued level of resources to support these programs.

What do you hope the Australasian NIDCAP Training Centre achieves? I have high hopes for the training centre for Australasia. This is only the beginning and I know great things are still to come. I hope all nurses, doctors and allied health professionals have greater exposure and opportunity to neuroproctective care programs and NIDCAP especially in the rural areas. I hope the training centre can source some exciting sponsors and donors to continue the amazing work that has commenced. I would like the Training centre to support more NIDCAP trainers and professionals through their training. Early stages of research has commenced and the centre has a strong focus on research. I look forward to seeing the results from this very important area.

Editor's note: The views of individuals do not represent the view of the Australasian NIDCAP Training Centre.