The Role of the Perinatal-Neonatal Nurse Navigator in a Tertiary Care Center
Version of Record online: 14 JUN 2012
© 2012 AWHONN, the Association of Women's Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses
Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic, & Neonatal Nursing
Special Issue: 2012 Convention Proceedings
Volume 41, Issue s1, page S77, June 2012
How to Cite
Rice, D. L. (2012), The Role of the Perinatal-Neonatal Nurse Navigator in a Tertiary Care Center. Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic, & Neonatal Nursing, 41: S77. doi: 10.1111/j.1552-6909.2012.01361_32.x
- Issue online: 14 JUN 2012
- Version of Record online: 14 JUN 2012
- coordination or care;
- promoting optimal outcomes;
- nurse navigator
Purpose for the Program
Coordination of care for high-risk obstetric patients and their infants is vital to promoting optimal neonatal outcomes. Under the direction of perinatologists and neonatologists, the position of the perinatal–neonatal nurse navigator was created. The purpose of this position is to provide coordination of care to high-risk obstetric patients whose infants have been diagnosed with a fetal anomaly or lethal diagnosis.
A perinatal–neonatal nurse navigator is a consistent contact person for the patient. By meeting the patient in clinic during scheduled appointments, the patient has a support resource at the facility. Coordination of care with the physicians involved in the care of the mother and the infant after birth is also a priority for the nurse navigator. A perinatal case list is utilized to maintain a record of the patient's plan of care.
Implementation, Outcomes, and Evaluation
Names of the high-risk obstetric patients are gathered after their ultrasounds indicate a fetal anomaly. The initial meeting to introduce the patient to the nurse navigator and explain the nurse's role occurs during the next scheduled appointment. Working under the direction of the perinatologists, prenatal pediatric specialty consults are arranged. Tours of the facility, including the neonatal intensive care unit, also are included. Referrals to community resources are provided as identified. The care provided by the nurse navigator is tailored to each patient. A monthly multiprofessional interdisciplinary team meeting has been developed to provide a forum for health professionals to come together to review complex cases and to coordinate plan of care. The evaluation of the nurse navigator role is ongoing and ever changing to meet the needs of the patients.
Implications for Nursing Practice
Nursing leadership participates in the monthly interdisciplinary team meeting. This exchange of information is vital to promote communication among team members and coordination of patient care.