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In The News

Learn about newsworthy NANN updates and how the organization and our volunteers are making a difference for neonatal nurses, patients, and their families.

January 12, 2021

Press Release: In the NICU, Parents Are Essential Caregivers Too: A Consensus Statement on Family Presence in Neonatal Intensive Care Units

The emergence of SARS-CoV-2 has understandably altered the way we deliver neonatal care. As we navigate this global pandemic, neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) staff are challenged not just with the demands of providing expert critical care to fragile infants and families, but with doing so under extraordinary risks and ever-changing conditions.

The Association of Women's Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses (AWHONN), The National Perinatal Association (NPA) and National Association of Neonatal Nurses (NANN) recognize the unique challenges facing healthcare providers in reducing the risks of COVID-19 transmission while encouraging parent presence and engagement in care. We also re-affirm our commitment to delivering family-integrated care that promotes parent-infant attachment and supports parents' roles as primary caregivers for their infants. We believe NICU parents are "essential caregivers." 

Incorporating the collective, multidisciplinary perspectives and expertise of our organizations, we've created this Consensus Statement. In it, we put forward recommendations for trauma-informed policies and practices that support family-integrated care in our Neonatal Intensive Parenting Units (NIPUs). We advocate for parents' primary role in providing essential care to their hospitalized infant. We encourage parental presence knowing its benefits for providers, families, and infants. 

We recognize that our understanding of this virus changes rapidly and we acknowledge that hospital policies must change in response to unique concerns and regional developments. As we look for timely, interdisciplinary responses and solutions, our organizations advocate for the incorporation of trauma-informed care for all interactions during the pandemic and for the recognition of parents as essential caregivers for their hospitalized newborns.


 Gail signature

Gail A. Bagwell, DNP, APRN, CNS
President, NANN

NPA Signatures

Jerry Ballas, MD, MPH
Viveka Prakash-Zawisza, MD, MS, MBA
Co-Presidents, NPA

 AWHONN Signature

Cyndy Krening, MS, CNS, RNC-OB, C-EFM
President, AWHONN

October 1, 2020

Press Release: Marijuana, Breastfeeding, and the Use of Human Milk: Position Statement from the National Association of Neonatal Nurses

Breastfeeding is the optimal feeding method and human milk the optimal source of nutrition for neonates and infants, but research addressing the impact of marijuana use during breastfeeding is limited. Additionally, the legalization of marijuana in several US states and Canadian provinces has highlighted confusion regarding safety during pregnancy and lactation. As the professional voice of neonatal nurses, the National Association of Neonatal Nurses (NANN) recommends women abstain from marijuana consumption during pregnancy and while breastfeeding in a new position statement.

Human milk and breastfeeding provide preferred nutrition for infant growth and development, but research shows that intrauterine marijuana exposure is associated with decreased birth weight and preterm birth. Emerging evidence reports neurocognitive and education deficits in children and adolescents exposed to marijuana during fetal development.

Marijuana crosses into breast milk after maternal consumption, but data on the associated risks to infants are insufficient to address the safety of marijuana consumption by women who are breastfeeding. In the organizations' new position statement, NANN provides both rationale and recommendations health care providers can use when working with mothers who use marijuana while breastfeeding.

"We know that breast milk is the optimal nutrition for all neonates and infants, but we also know that for mothers who use the drug while breastfeeding, their breast milk will contain the drug as well," says NANN President Joan Rikli, MBA MSN RN CPNP NE-BC. "In order to reduce the risk of low birth weight, prematurity, and negative long-term neurobehavioral effects to neonates and infants, NANN recommends that lactating mothers abstain from marijuana use." The organization's position statement adds that mothers who choose to continue to use marijuana should be advised to significantly reduce intake and be informed of the possible adverse effects.

NANN's new position statement lists 14 recommendations for providers for addressing maternal marijuana use and the potential negative impact on neonates and infants. The accompanying infographic aims to facilitate easy sharing of recommendations and safety information on marijuana use of expecting and lactating mothers within the neonatal nursing population. 

About NANN
As the professional voice and home of neonatal nurses, nurse practitioners, and clinical nurse specialists, NANN supports the advancement of the neonatal nursing profession through opportunities for neonatal nurses to influence care for neonates and their families, collaborate with leaders and peers in their field, and gain clinical knowledge to improve daily practice. NANN serves nearly 7,500 members from all over the world. Learn more at

June 2, 2020

NANN Statement on Racial Injustice

The National Association of Neonatal Nurses (NANN) believes in the equality of all human beings, despite race, gender, sexual identity, or creed. The events of the last week involving the tragic death of George Floyd are heartbreaking and we grieve for the unnecessary loss of his precious life. We understand that Mr. Floyd is only the most recent high-profile tragedy in a long story of racism, social injustice, and inequality. For too long, America has maintained a culture of racial disparity and we believe it is time for a change.

NANN will work with our leaders, our community, and our Health Policy and Advocacy committee to ensure that lawmakers on every level hear and understand our collective voices on these matters. We will find ways to take the action that is needed to encourage and demand the end of systemic racism in this country and our members will have opportunities to join in our legislative efforts. This is a human issue that affects us all, impacting our community of neonatal nurses, patients, and families both inside and outside the NICU.

We will not be silent.

NANN celebrates diversity and inclusion. Through every action we take, we aim to connect and welcome all people. We seek out diverse viewpoints and celebrate the unique characteristics and experiences each member, volunteer leader, customer, and staff member shares with our organization. We will continue to bring forth difficult topics, have hard conversations, and shed light into areas that have gone unchecked for too long. We are committed to creating, maintaining, and continually improving an environment of inclusion.

While you can expect updates of our advocacy, diversity, and inclusion initiatives in the coming months, we also want to hear from you. We encourage you to share your stories with our Membership Director, Molly Anderson, to let us know where and how NANN can help, what’s working and what’s not. NANN stands firmly for racial equality and alongside all Black Americans during this heartbreaking time and we recognize that there is much work to be done.

Together, we can make a change happen. Join us.


Rikli Joan - cropped

Joan Rikli
NANN President

Wilson Dionne

Dionne S. Wilson
NANN Executive Director

NANN Board of Directors

NANNP Council

January 16, 2020

Press Release: NANN Launches Newborn Safe Sleep Guideline

The National Association of Neonatal Nurses (NANN) released their Newborn Safe Sleep guideline, the only clinical practice guideline that addresses the challenges of and provides recommendations on implementing safe sleep practices in the hospital setting for children between birth and 1 year of age. The guideline provides evidence-based protocols for creating a safe sleep environment for infants based on the history of sleep-related deaths and the American Academy of Pediatrics' safe sleep recommendations between 1992 and 2016. Common controversies and barriers related to implementing safe sleep in the hospital are also discussed, which will empower healthcare providers to improve daily practice with neonates and infants.

"NANN is thrilled to share this important guideline with the neonatal community," says NANN President-Elect and Newborn Safe Sleep guideline editor, Gail Bagwell, DNP APRN CNS. "As the professional voice of neonatal nursing, we strive to provide the education and tools needed to make a difference for nurses, our patients, and their families. Sleep related deaths are the leading cause of death between 1 month and 1 year of age for infants and nurses play a vital role in the education and role modeling of proper sleep behavior for all infants. This guideline will give nurses and other healthcare providers the tools necessary to do this job."

The Newborn Safe Sleep guideline was made possible through an unrestricted grant from Pampers®, part of the P&G family. "At Pampers®, caring for the healthy development of all babies is at the core of who we are. That is why we are elated to support the advancement of the neonatal community through our partnership with NANN. We believe this Newborn Safe Sleep guideline put together by NANN is an important resource that will aid nurses in caring for babies' healthy development," says Pampers Scientific Communication Leader Veronica Sanchez PhD.

About NANN
At nearly 8,000 members strong, NANN is the professional voice and home of neonatal nurses, nurse practitioners, and clinical nurse specialists. NANN supports the advancement of the neonatal nursing profession through opportunities for neonatal nurses to influence care for neonates and their families, collaborate with leaders and peers in their field, and gain clinical knowledge to improve daily practice. NANN serves nearly 7,500 members from all over the world. Learn more at

About Pampers®
For more than 50 years, parents have trusted Pampers to care for their babies. Pampers is a part of The Procter & Gamble Company (NYSE:PG) and is the #1-selling diaper worldwide. Every day, more than 25 million babies in 100 countries around the world wear Pampers. Pampers offers a complete range of diapers, wipes and training pants designed to provide protection and comfort for every stage of baby's development. Visit to learn more about Pampers products, join the Pampers Rewards program, and find ideas and information to help your baby get the most out of love, sleep and play.

About Procter & Gamble
P&G serves consumers around the world with one of the strongest portfolios of trusted, quality, leadership brands, including Always®, Ambi Pur®, Ariel®, Bounty®, Charmin®, Crest®, Dawn®, Downy®, Fairy®, Febreze®, Gain®, Gillette®, Head & Shoulders®, Lenor®, Olay®, Oral-B®, Pampers®, Pantene®, SK-II®, Tide®, Vicks®, and Whisper®. The P&G community includes operations in approximately 70 countries worldwide. Please visit for the latest news and information about P&G and its brands.