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May 18, 2022

Where Every Family Matters

WMC Earns Center of Excellence in Education

Williamson Medical Center is one of the 26 hospitals in the state that achieved the excellence designation.

Williamson Medical Center (WMC) has received a “Center of Excellence in Education and Training for Infants and Families Affected by Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome” designation from the Vermont Oxford Network (VON), a global leader in data-driven quality improvement for newborn care.

The award recognizes WMC among the 85 percent of the multidisciplinary care teams across the state participating in the “Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome Collaborative: Improving Care to Improve Outcomes” that have completed universal training for care of neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS). 

“WMC was proud to be a part of this important initiative developed to standardize and elevate the care of substance-exposed infants and families statewide,” said Phil Mazzuca, WMC CEO. “Our award-winning obstetrics team is committed to provide exceptional care for the babies born at our hospital. The completion of this universal training further equips our team to ensure the best care for infants born with NAS.”

Neonatal abstinence syndrome is drug withdrawal syndrome experienced by infants exposed to opioids while in utero. Infants born with NAS are more likely to have respiratory complications, feeding difficulty, low birthweights and extended hospital stays. 

The Tennessee Initiative for Perinatal Quality Care (TIPQC) partnered with VON to provide 30 hospitals in the state universal training designed to standardize care policies. The collaborative approach to universal training included rapid-cycle distribution of current evidence-based practices to the entire interdisciplinary workforce engaged in caring for substance-exposed infants and families. This approach has been proven to reduce length of hospital stay and length of pharmacologic treatment while increasing family satisfaction. Williamson Medical Center is one of the 26 hospitals in the state that achieved the excellence designation from VON and contributed to the second statewide recognition of excellence in education and training that VON has awarded. 

“Congratulations to all the care teams across the state of Tennessee who have shown how dedicated the state is to caring for this vulnerable population affected by the national opioid epidemic,” said Jeffrey Horbar, Chief Executive and Scientific Officer of VON. 

As a global leader in data-driven quality improvement for newborn care, VON leads multi-center quality improvement collaboratives and provides resources to help interdisciplinary teams improve on the most critical and complex challenges facing newborn caregivers. While more than 250 centers nationwide have completed VON’s universal training for NAS, Tennessee is only the third statewide collaborative to achieve the Excellence in Education and Training distinction.