Date of Degree


Document Type


Degree Name





Lorraine Byrnes

Committee Members

Lorie Goshin

Mary Hickey

Regina Spinazolla

Subject Categories

Maternal, Child Health and Neonatal Nursing | Nursing


Neonatal, Neonatal Intensive Care, Developmental Care, Individualized developmental care, Newborn


Infants born prematurely are at a greater risk for developing both cognitive and motor development delays related to continuing their development outside the normal uterine environment. Because of the potential adverse effects of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) environment on the quality of life of premature infants and their families, researchers have investigated, developed, and tested different developmentally supportive interventions to improve outcomes and decrease the negative effects of the NICU. The majority of successful interventions are based on the Synactive Theory of Individualized Developmental Care (IDC)-a form of patient/family- centered care for the neonate.

The majority of published IDC studies focus on how IDC effects premature infants related to length of stay, days on ventilation, developmental delays, and other measureable outcomes. No studies have measured knowledge, attitudes, and perceived self-competency of NICU nurses effects on the delivery of IDC and the impact on neonatal outcomes.

The purpose of this study is to describe NICU nurses’ knowledge of IDC, attitudes towards implementation of IDC, and how NICU nurses’ knowledge and attitudes affect their perceived competency in implementing IDC. The aim of this quantitative, correlational study is to identify any correlations between and among knowledge, attitudes, and perceived self-competency regarding IDC.

These findings may help to identify factors that support successful implementation of IDC and factors that are barriers to successful implementation of IDC. The study findings may also help lead to improved implementation of IDC and help increase positive outcomes for premature infants and their family.