Advanced Clinician in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) NewYork-Presbyterian Alexandra Cohen Hospital for Women and Newborns
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I am a social worker in the 60 bed level IV NICU at NewYork-Presbyterian Alexandra Cohen Hospital for Women and Newborns. I have been at New York Presbyterian Weill Cornell Medical Center for nearly 4 years. I received my Bachelors in Social Work from University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and My Masters in Social Work from Columbia University. Prior to working in the NICU, I worked primarily with adults diagnosed with Gastrointestinal Cancers. In both of these areas, I enjoyed working with individuals to process their grief and loss. It is such an honor and privilege to support patients in some of the most vulnerable moments of their lives.
Why do you like working in perinatal health?
I love perinatal health because it is filled with so many bittersweet moments. So much happiness and also so much heartache. I enjoy processing these emotions with parents and supporting them as they form their new story and create a meaningful story after loss or complications.
Tell us about working with The Colette Louise Tisdahl Foundation.
The Colette Louise Tisdahl Foundation has been so important during my work. There are so many costs and barriers for parents as they navigate a NICU admission or a perinatal loss. Colette Louise has helped so many of my parents and reduced so much stress for them. I am forever grateful for this resource and the peace it has given to many of my patients.
How would you describe the importance of social workers?
For me, I decided to work in hospital social work because I always found hospital and doctor visits to be scary. I wanted to be a friendly face for others as they experience some of the most stressful and traumatic times in their lives. Social Workers humanize medical settings and advocate for the most equitable treatment for all patients.
What advice would you give families in crisis due to pregnancy complications, NICU stays, or loss?
I would remind them that this is not their fault. It is easy to blame our bodies for failing us or to find a reason why a loss occurred. It would be easier to cope with a complication if we could find something to blame every time, however there are many things in life that we may never find an answer to and the healing begins when we let go of some of that guilt.
Favorite form of self-care: My favorite form of self-care is walking in the park, listening to music, & getting my nails done.
Currently binging: Been binging a lot of True Crime Documentaries lately!
Extrovert or Introvert?: I consider myself an introverted extrovert. I love my alone time but when I am comfortable with family or friends, I have an extroverted side too!