Overland Park Regional Medical Center—part of HCA Midwest Health, Kansas City’s leading healthcare provider—has received the Vermont Oxford Network 2016 Center of Excellence in Education and Training for Substance-exposed Infants and Their Families.  In 2015, the hospital, a leader in neonatal care in the region, enrolled in a national multi-center quality improvement collaborative sponsored by the Vermont Oxford Network (VON). VON is a nonprofit voluntary collaboration of healthcare professionals working together as an interdisciplinary community to change the landscape of neonatal care.

Opioid use in pregnant women, which includes the use of heroin and prescription opioid analgesic medications, has escalated dramatically over the past several years, resulting in a corresponding rise in the number of newborn infants who develop severe signs of opioid withdrawal, a condition called neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS). Infants with NAS have higher rates of neonatal complications and prolonged lengths of hospital stay.

 “We are proud to lead the effort at Overland Park Regional Medical Center in training our healthcare team to improve the quality, safety and value of care for substance-exposed infants and their families,” says Kathleen Weatherstone, M.D., board-certified Neonatologist and Medical Director of the Neonatal ICU at Overland Park Regional Medical Center. “We are known for our commitment to and passion for serving the vulnerable neonatal patient and their families and continue to expand our reach and scope by impacting the health and well-being of these particularly fragile neonates.”

“When it comes to serving the community—especially those most vulnerable such as neonates—Overland Park Regional Medical Center excels at providing compassionate, high-quality care,” says Kevin J. Hicks, Chief Executive Officer of Overland Park Regional Medical Center. “Recognition by the Vermont Oxford Network as a Center of Excellence in Education and Training is another indicator of our dedication to ensure every population segment is served, including the tiniest.”

Overland Park Regional Medical Center brings together the region’s best and most experienced obstetricians, gynecologists, surgeons, infertility specialists, neonatologists, pediatricians, advanced neonatal nurse practitioners, certified nurse midwives and therapists to provide some of the region’s most advanced, high-risk quality care.

For more information about Overland Park Regional Medical Center, visit oprmc.com.