Baby Beats & Breaths - Therapeutic Interventions for the Premature Infant with Cardiopulmonary Compromise

July 15-16, 2023
8-5 p.m. CST Saturday and Sunday



[Click here to Register on our Partner's Site]


Course Description

This intermediate-advanced course will focus on the cardiopulmonary implications for the premature or medically-complex infant as related to physiological stability, evolving motor control, sensory stability, and transition to oral motor skills that support feeding. It will focus on advancing the critical reasoning skills of the neonatal therapist to support the infant's ability to obtain foundational motor and sensory skills. These skills include the ability of the infant to cough, produce audible phonation, oral motor skills, swallow skills, trunk facilitation, and gestational age-appropriate positioning/
handling to support the emergence of gross motor skills for postural stability. You will learn movement analysis skills (via lab time and video presentations) to assess breathing patterns, facilitation techniques to support trunk development, positioning strategies to support chest wall development, and feeding techniques to maximize postural control. We will discuss current literature as relevant to this topic and apply a systems theory approach for case study treatment planning.

Participant Requirements for the course: In order to maximize the learning experience during lab time, each participant needs to bring a soft body doll. The ideal size would be 10-15”, but any soft body doll will work.

Course Objectives

Upon completion of this continuing education seminar, participants will be able to:

  • Integrate chest wall movement assessment and treatment strategies to maximize infant outcomes
  • Utilize developmental positioning and handling interventions to reduce chest wall deformities
  • Assess the effects of invasive and non-invasive pulmonary support to the facial and oral structures as related to non-nutritive sucking and oral feeding progression
  • Incorporate postural support with positioning and handling of infants for improved chest wall mobility during oral feeding
  • Integrate a systems approach to individualized care plan for the infant with cardiopulmonary compromised

About the Instructors

Holly Schifsky, OTR/L, CNT, NTMTC, CBIS, has worked in pediatrics for the past 26 years with the past 16 years in a level IV NICU. She is a Certified Neonatal Therapist, Certified Neonatal Touch and Massage Therapist, Certified Brain Injury therapist, a member of National Association of Neonatal Therapists, and has completed 6-month mentorship in infant/child NDT.

She has worked within the NICU and NICU follow-up clinic to maximize patient and family outcomes for the most complex premature and medically-fragile term infants. Holly received her BS in OT from the University of North Dakota. She is a faculty member for the Neonatal Touch and Massage certification; and Manuel Edema Mobilization training. She is the recipient of the National Association of Neonatal Therapists Clinical Excellence award in 2018, due to her clinical expertise and dedication to advancing the therapeutic interventions for NICU infants with cardiopulmonary conditions.


Coming Soon...


Texas Children's Hospital - West Campus

1st Floor Conference Center, Rooms WH-01A & WH-01B
18200 Katy Freeway
Houston, TX 77094

Click here for directions

Hotel Accommodations

Courtyard Houston I-10/Park Row

18010 Park Row
Houston, TX 77084


Distance .4 miles


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Hampton Inn & Suites I10 West Park Row

18014 Park Row Drive


Distance .4 miles

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For More Information


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Who Should Attend

This course is recommended for intermediate-to-advanced neonatal therapists, PTs, PTAs, OTs, OTAs, and SLPs working with infants in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.



14.5 contact hours or CCU's.