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PO Box: 11-0236
Riad El Solh, Beirut 1107 2020
Beirut - Lebanon (More)
Developmental Care, Early Intervention and Follow-Up Program​

About us 

The Developmental Care, Early Intervention and Follow up Program (DCEIP) is an integral part of the division of neonatology. The program aims at providing infants individualized developmental care during their stay in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), and after discharge.

In the NICU, a trained team supports the developmental care approach following the Neonatal Individualized Developmental Care model (NIDCAP) to NICU infants, health care providers and families. The team conducts regular rounds to observe infants’ behaviors, strengths and challenges. Based on those observations, the team sets goals and recommendations to benefit infants’ development for NICU staff and parents.

Infants graduating from the NICU are at risk of growth restriction, developmental delay and other co-morbidities. They are offered to be followed in a dedicated unit, the Neonatology Continuity Clinic (NCC). NCC serves as a multidisciplinary hub for the follow up of preterm and term infants at risk for long term morbidities. This follow up includes assessment of infants’ growth, nutrition, physical wellbeing, vision screening, neurodevelopment, cognitive and behavioural problems. At the end of each assessment, guidance for early intervention will be offered to help infants reach their growth and developmental potentials.  

Who we are?

In the NICU, the DCEIP team consists of a neonatologist, two nurses, and a program coordinator. The team works in parallel with other disciplines in the NICU toward having developmentally supportive care using the NIDCAP framework. NIDCAP consists of a comprehensive approach that supports individual infant's stability and promotes developmental goals. In the NCC, a neonatologist, a developmental specialist, a nutritionist, a social worker and other specialists offer a holistic comprehensive approach for assessing the child’s physical, nutritional and developmental wellbeing as early as of two months corrected age until the age of three years.

Our mission

  • To provide individualized developmental care based on NIDCAP principles for all infants admitted to NICU.

  • To educate healthcare professionals, related disciplines and parents about developmental care.

  • To provide a continuum of care with comprehensive and multidisciplinary service to patients “graduating” from the NICU. 

  • To ensure early detection and initiate intervention for any developmental delay.
  • To support and educate parents on the risk of developmental delay and empower them to achieve healthy outcomes for their infants.

Our vision

  1. To establish a Center of Excellence at AUBMC in developmental care and early intervention for premature and critically ill infants.
  2. To establish the first NIDCAP certified unit in the country.
  3. To establish a NIDCAP training center at AUBMC.
  4. To provide a continuum of care with comprehensive multidisciplinary approach to patients “graduating” from the NICU. 

  5. To ensure early detection and initiate intervention for any developmental delay.
  6. To support and educate parents on the risk of developmental delay and empower them to achieve healthy outcomes for their infants.

Our activities 

The DCEIP team has been involved in different activities in the NICU. These include: 

  • NIDCAP training and certification: NIDCAP benefits any infant admitted to the NICU in addition to his/her parents; this approach promotes parental bonding and involvement and ultimately improves infants’ outcome.

  • Quality improvement (QI) projects: infant positioning, implementation of Kangaroo care, promotion of breastfeeding in the NICU, and improving admission temperature of preterm infants.

  • Medical and nursing staff education about developmental care practices.

  • Research activities: validation of a parental stress questionnaire in Arabic, Effect of maternal scent on infants’ stress and nutrition.

Contact us 

Lama Charafeddine, MD FAAP
Director, DCEIP, certified NIDCAP Professional
Telephone: +961-1-350000 ext. 5874
Email: lc12@aub.edu.lb 

Saadieh Masri, RN, MPH
Coordinator, DCEIP, certified NIDCAP Professional 
Telephone: +961-1-350000 ext.7454
Email: sm52@aub.edu.lb

Grace Abdel Nour, RN certified NIDCAP Professional 
Telephone: +961-1-350000 ext.6275
Email: ga29@aub.edu.lb

Amal Saad, RN, certified NIDCAP Professional
Telephone: +961-1-350000 ext.6275
Email: as39@aub.edu.lb

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