BMH Birthing Center Honored for Child Abuse Prevention Education

Prevent Child Abuse Vermont (PCAV) presented an plaque to nurses in Brattleboro Memorial Hospital’s Birthing Center during a Wednesday, April 18 luncheon, recognizing their efforts in educating new parents about infant crying and the dangers of shaking.

The plaque was presented by Lisa Keller, Director of the Vermont Department for Children and Families (DCF), to Debbie Partrick, manager of the Birthing Center, during a ceremony coinciding with National Child Abuse Prevention Month. The BMH nurses have been participating in a statewide prevention program since 2009, and this year they had a 97 percent returned pledge form rate.

“We believe the work that these nurses have committed to has been a key factor to why the numbers of cases of Shaken Baby Syndrome and Abusive Head Trauma that we are aware of has dropped significantly,” said Kay Shangraw, RN, manager for the PCAV Shaken Baby Syndrome Prevention program.

The education BMH nurses provide new parents includes talking with them about infant crying, asking them to watch a short 8 minute video about Shaken Baby Syndrome and then having them sign a pledge form that says they will keep their baby safe and share this information with care providers.

Vermont had seen a huge increase in cases of Shaken Baby Syndrome from October 2007- December 2010. In that time period, 23 cases were in the news or brought to the attention of Prevent Child Abuse Vermont. Six infants died during that time period as well as a young man who had been a victim of Shaken Baby Syndrome/ Abusive Head Trauma as an infant.

“We thank Kay Shangraw and the rest of the Prevent Child Abuse Vermont staff for their guidance and are pleased to know our efforts made a difference in lives of newborns and their parents. I would also like to thank my staff who made the commitment to educate our new parents, the 97% return rate is recognition of their dedication.” said Debbie Partrick, Nurse Manager for the BMH Birthing Center.

Debbie Partrick, Nurse Manager BMH Birthing Center

The Birthing Center is one of several specialty areas of patient care at BMH. All Birthing Center nurses have training in BLS (Basic CPR), ACLS (Advanced Cardiac Life Support), NRP (Neonatal Resuscitation Program), and STABLE (Infant Stabilization). There are five board certified Lactation Consultants (IBCLCs) and three nurses that carry certifications in Maternal/Newborn Nursing, Advanced Fetal Monitoring, Inpatient Obstetrics, and Low Risk Neonatal Nursing. In addition, two nurses are certified Lamaze instructors and there are two nurses who are trained Bereavement Counselors for infant loss.

For more information, contact Debbie Partrick in the BMH Birthing Center at 802-257-8228.

Brattleboro Memorial Hospital (BMH) has provided health care services for over a hundred years. A 61-bed, not-for-profit community hospital located in Southeast Vermont, it serves a rural population of about 55,000 people in 22 towns in Vermont, New Hampshire and Massachusetts. The medical staff includes 137 board-certified physicians, both primary care and many specialists, and its 515 employees enjoy the help of over 150 active volunteers. BMH is accredited by the Joint Commission, the nation’s leading standards-setting and accrediting organization in health care.

Prevent Child Abuse Vermont (PCAV) is the Vermont Chapter of Prevent Child Abuse America and the National Roundtable of Family Support Programs. PCAV has a thirty year track record of promoting and supporting healthy relationships between children and people who care for them in order to eliminate child abuse. PCAV operates a central office in Montpelier and has a staff of sixteen, ten of whom work out of PCAV’s central office with the remaining six working in regions throughout the state either from their homes or offices in the community.

For more photos from the event, visit the BMH Facebook page.