Conducting research can sound daunting, especially to a bedside nurse with no formal research training. In the first episode of NANNcast’s limited series, Nurse Scientists, hosts Jill Beck and Media Esser sit down with chair of the Small Grants Committee, Amy Koehn, and fellow committee member and former small grant recipient, Ashlee Vance, to discuss how NANN’s Small Grants Program supports the novice nurse researcher. Together Jill, Media, Amy, and Ashlee hope to demystify some of the anxieties nurses have around starting their own research. Listen in to better understand the difference between research and evidence-based practice projects and how all you need is a burning question and some passion to embark on your own research journey! If you are interested in learning more about NANN’s Small Grants Program and submitting an application, please visit the NANN website.

Neonatal neurocritical care is dedicated to addressing the potential impact and complications of injury on the developing brain. Early recognition of at risk newborns by means of advanced methods of neuro imaging combined with brain focused interventions may result in the prevention or reduction of life long disabilities. Many neonatal nurses care for patients that require advanced neuro imaging, but have little training in how to interpret neuro imaging. Jill is joined by two experts in neonatal neurology, Kathi Randall, MSN NNP-BC and Diane Wilson, MN NP-Paeds NNP-BC. Together Jill, Kathi, and Diane discuss advanced imaging technologies like MRI, how nurses can better interpret neuro imaging results, and how to support families whose baby requires neuro imaging.

November 23, 2020

Marijuana and Breastfeeding

Jill is joined by Carol Wallman, DNP APRN NNP-BC, lead author of NANN’s position statement Marijuana, Breastfeeding, and the Use of Human Milk. Jill and Carol dive into the position statement, which recommends women abstain from marijuana consumption during pregnancy and while breastfeeding. Listen in to learn more about the research surrounding marijuana and breastfeeding along with recommendations for how to support mothers that are using marijuana while breastfeeding. 


Read NANN’s official position statement and infographic on Marijuana, Breastfeeding, and the Use of Human Milk at  

November 9, 2020

Eat, Sleep, Console

Jill is joined by Stacy Boden, CPNP APNP, who has dedicated time to studying and advancing the model of Eat, Sleep, Console (ESC) in her institutions. ESC, a model for treating Neonatal Opioid Syndrome, is used as an alternative to the traditional Finnegan Neonatal Abstinence Scoring System model. ESC has been praised for its family-centered approach, use of non-pharmacological interventions, and success with treating babies. Listen in as Jill and Stacy discuss ESC in depth, Stacy’s success with ESC, and how your hospital might value from implementing ESC.

October 13, 2020

Supporting Nursing Research

Research drives the practice of nursing and is vital for propelling the profession into the future. NANN strives to provide avenues for members to become more active in accessing, understanding, conducting, and practicing research and evidence-based neonatal care. During this episode, Jill speaks with Dr. Media Esser, current Director-at-Large on NANN’s Board of Directors, and Dr. Tiffany Moore, Chair of NANN’s Research Committee, to discuss the ways NANN supports nursing research. We hope the conversation inspires all nurses to have the confidence to move forward with their own research journey.  

Learn more about NANN’s dedication to research by visiting

From Monday, September 14th through Sunday, September 20th, 2020, NANN is celebrating Neonatal Nurses Week. This weeklong celebration is a time to honor nurse colleagues and show pride in being a neonatal nurse or neonatal APRN. In this celebratory episode, Jill is joined by Tommie Farrell, Kelly Roebuck, and Melanie Crisafulli – three NICU nurses at various stages of their careers. Together Jill, Tommie, Kelly, and Melanie share advice, lessons learned, and their love for neonatal nursing. We hope listeners of this NANNcast episode feel inspired, supported, and proud to be a neonatal nurse not only during Neonatal Nurses Week, but always! 

Jill Beck is joined by Laura Czernik, MA CCC/SLP, a speech language pathologist from Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, to discuss how beneficial speech language pathologists can be in the NICU. Speech language pathologists are not present in every NICU, but their services can impact developmental outcomes relating to communication, cognition, swallowing, and feeding in babies. Jill and Laura dive into how Laura promotes safe and efficient feeding and swallowing in some of the most fragile patients. Listen in as they discuss cue-based feeding versus volume-based feeding, nipple flow rates, tips for units that do not have access to speech language pathologists, and much more.   

NANN believes in the equality of all human beings despite race, gender, sexual identity, or creed. While we believe all babies should receive the same excellent quality of care, the data shows that race and unconscious bias affect the care and outcomes of patients in the NICU. In this episode of NANNcast, Jill sits down with NANN’s President, Joan Rikli, to discuss data relating to racial and health disparity in the NICU, steps NANN is taking to address racial disparity, and how nurses can drive change in their NICU. Jill and Joan are also joined by Nicole Dixon, Nurse Manager at Atrium Health, for an open, candid conversation on Nicole’s experience as an African-American NICU nurse. While we can’t provide listeners with all the answers, NANNcast is proud to help get the conversation on racial and health inequality started with listeners, as we strive to help create better outcomes for our patients and families.  

The use of Kratom and CBD by expectant mothers is a continued subject of study as we seek to understand the effects that these substances may have on babies. Host Jill Beck is joined by Maureen Shogan, MN RNC, to discuss these substances in detail. Maureen is currently the Clinical Director for a National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) project on developing Neonatal Abstinence curriculum for mobile devices. Listen along to familiarize yourself with Kratom and CBD, and how these substances may impact mothers and babies in your NICU or Mother Baby Unit. 

This NANNcast episode was recorded 7/21/2020.

July 8, 2020

Preterm Gut Health

Gut health is critical in early life as it assists with growth, neurodevelopment, and drives the immune system. Diving into the importance of gut health, host Jill Beck is joined by Katherine Gregory, PhD RN FAAN, who has devoted her research to understanding preterm gut health and the microbiome. Dr. Gregory started out as a staff nurse with a drive to develop early markers of necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC). Her questions and persistence led her to mentorships, advanced schooling, and the opportunity to conduct vital research on the gut and microbiome. Listen along to hear more about Dr. Gregory’s journey, research, and hope for creating a vital sign for the gut.

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