Nepean Neonatal Intensive Care Unit Parent Support - NNICUPS - was formed in March 1992, an initiative of Julie Clarke, the mother of a 27 week premature baby (13 weeks early) who was born in York, England. Julie had formed a similar group at York District Hospital, upon moving to Australia she decided to establish the concept here and was the first of its kind.
We are based at Nepean Hospital and our members are parents of babies who have been cared for in Nepean's NICU. Our aim is to support parents before and after the birth of their baby and assist in providing emotion support during their baby’s NICU journey.
NNICUPS’s aim is to help alleviate the anxiety and trauma of parents who have a baby being cared for in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, by providing emotional and practical support. Parents of these newborn babies need to be reassured that the feelings of guilt, the possibility of their baby passing and fear of becoming too attached or not at all to their baby, are normal.
In our experience we find that only someone who has experienced these anxieties can truly empathise. It's often easier to confide in a stranger, as other family members will also have feelings of anguish.