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"First Do No Harm: Environmental Responsibility in the NICU"

June 7, 2010

WPSR is proud to announce that the Vermont Oxford Network (a group comprised of over 800 Neonatal Intensive Care Units around the world) has just released a new eBook: NICQ 2007: Improvement in Action, and WPSR’s Nancy Dickeman in collaboration with Michelle Gottlieb of Healthcare Without Harm, authored a chapter on environment responsibility in the NICU (and beyond). The book, which was just released, is the culmination of NICQ 2007, a two-year improvement collaborative involving teams of neonatal professionals and families representing 46 hospitals in North America whose goal was always to provide care that is family centered, safe, effective, equitable, efficient, timely and socially and environmentally responsible.  


Here is a brief excerpt from the chapter: “The notion that healthcare is designed to heal is fundamental to our society’s vision of medicine, yet there is a growing recognition that healthcare institutions can be a significant contributor to both chemical contamination and disease burden. Over 10 years ago, with the emergence of the organization Health Care Without Harm, hospitals and healthcare leaders began to recognize and address their industry’s contribution to environmental and public health harm. With the oath to “do no harm,” healthcare providers have an ethical imperative to lead the path to more sustainable design and operations. Because healthcare leaders are seen as trusted members of society, and because hospitals and healthcare providers have a tremendous opportunity to promote prevention and wellness, this sector is well poised to emerge as leaders in modeling health and sustainability.”


Nancy retired as a WPSR staffer in 2009 after a number of years of dedicated service in the Environment and Human Health program area. Since leaving WPSR as a staff member, Nancy has continued to contribute to WPSR and the broader community in innumerable ways. Thanks, Nancy, and congratulations!



To read more of this chapter and/or the entire publication, go to

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