Making the Transition Home

Advanced Practices in Craniofacial Anomalies,

G-tube and Therapeutic Touch

DAY 1 - Making the Transition Home

As the numbers of infants in the NICU are rising, more therapists are being called on treat our youngest patients but few community-based therapists know what to expect when given the responsibility for assessing and treating NICU graduates. The purpose of this 8-hour presentation is to assist in multidisciplinary staff training of inpatient discharging therapists, outpatient and home health agency personnel as they care for the rising number of NICU graduates and their families as they are discharged to home. The course will cover issues unique to the preemie and the very sick newborn, exploring ways the therapist can care for the infant, and educate and empower the caregivers as they navigate this difficult transition. Participants will be taught how to read the child’s behavioral cues integrating this information into both assessment and treatment of feeding and developmental issues and possible resources to access. Through labs, each attendee will practice infant handling and positioning techniques. Finally issues surrounding program implementation including suggested competencies will be discussed based on ASHA, AOTA, and APTA guidelines.

DAY 2 - Advanced Practices in Craniofacial Anomalies, G-tube and Therapeutic Touch

In a continuation of “Beyond the NICU-Making the Transition Home” we will expand our scope to dig more deeply into conditions that may affect the sick newborn: craniofacial anomalies and dependence on a gastrostomy tube and ways to help. The presence of a cleft or other craniofacial anomaly can interfere with the eating and swallowing process, affecting respiratory health, nutrition, oral-motor and speech development, and even parent-child bonding. Although evaluating swallow function in a patient with a craniofacial anomaly can be quite complex and intimidating, we will discover some basic, easy-to-learn principles for analyzing how the anatomy impacts the physiology and the importance of taking into account the changes that occur over the course of the surgical intervention, therapy and physical growth. Also, Therapy doesn’t stop because a child gets a gastrostomy tube. The process of weaning from a G-tube should actually begin on the first day of placement.? Learn what to do in therapy while the tube is there, how to minimize complications and negative consequences, and how to put the pieces in place to facilitate decreased dependence or eventual weaning. Finally we will learn how to promote stability and reduce stress by stabilizing the autonomic nervous system – a necessary foundation for development. We can even help facilitate and integrate oral reflexes necessary for feeding and speech. Walk away with a thorough understanding of how anatomy drives feeding and techniques to help.


  • Signs and implications of autonomic instability
  • Long-term developmental issues common to NICU graduates
  • Feeding the former preemie
  • Family Issues and critical support during the difficult and scary transition to home
  • How craniofacial anomalies change the equation
  • Weaning from tube-feeding
  • Positive Touch as a therapeutic modality

Who Should Attend

This course has been submitted to TSHA, TOTA, and TPTA for approval. Please check the website for up to date credentialing information.


The Woman’s Hospital of Texas
Department of Pediatric Rehabilitation Services
7600 Fannin
Houston, Texas 77057
We will be in Classroom 101.
Parking vouchers will be provided.
Please check the website for nearby hotels.

Jennifer Meyer, M.A., CCC-SLP

Jennifer Meyer, M.A.CCC-SLP is a Feeding Specialist, Developmental Therapist and popular international speaker in the areas of Pediatric Dysphagia and Neonatal Therapy, receiving exceptional ratings for her courses across the U.S. and abroad. She has 25 years experience specializing in pediatric feeding disorders, working in Neonatal Intensive Care Units, developing inpatient dysphagia, neonatal and outpatient hospital-based feeding programs, Early Childhood Intervention programs, and serving as Assistant Clinical Professor at Texas Woman’s University and the developer and Clinical Coordinator of the Center for Assisting Families with Feeding and Eating (CAFFE). She has served as a paid consultant to several Home Health companies in the Dallas- Ft., Worth area, including mentoring more than 150 therapists and assisting in the development of a home-based High-Risk Infant program. Through her private practice, Feeding and Dysphagia Resources, she continues to provide consultation and program development for dysphagia services in a wide variety of settings. Jennifer and her husband are the creators of Care to Collaborate, an online community of therapists dedicated to improving patient care through interdisciplinary cooperation and dynamic researchbased education. Through all of her endeavors, Jennifer continues to serve as consultant and mentor in her mission to teach therapists to see themselves as facilitators in treating the child, supporting the family, and bringing back the fun, joy and family connection in eating.


Participants need to bring a:

Either Day $229
Both Days $399

Grab the $40 Early Bird Discount!

Register by September 16th to attend both days for only $359!

Register Online

Click Here to download PDF for more information.