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Introduction for California Neonatal Intensive Care Units (NICU) and Neonatologists Web Directory 2019

The Directory history and plan to update to Web Directory are described in  J. of Perinatology 15 March 2018 ( https://doi.org/10.1038/s41372-018-0097-8 ) article.

The first NICU and Neonatologists Directory in California in 1994 was approved by the newly established California Association of Neonatologists (CAN) leadership,  which recognized the need to identify all of the NICUs and neonatologists to facilitate communication and networking to improve perinatal and neonatal care.  Dr. Dilip Bhatt led this significant project and he updated the paper Directories through 2011 as a National and Canadian Directory. Although the CA Directory has been updated each year the National Canadian and Training Program Directories have not been updated.

The CAN Board has elected representatives from all regions of California and from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) District IX, Section on Neonatal Perinatal Medicine (SONPM).   In 2017-18, the CAN Board reviewed and approved the proposal from Dr. Ronald Ariagno, Dr. Henry Lee and Dr. Dilip Bhatt to initiate the Web Based Directory project. Dr. David Stevenson, Chief of the Division of Neonatal and Developmental Medicine at Stanford and CAN provided startup funding. Mead Johnson Nutrition (original funders of Directory project in 1994 through 2011) provided a grant to complete the project. All of the data updates for the 2019 Web Directory were obtained by Dr. Dilip Bhatt and Dr. Marian Adams via personally contacting the NICUs and Neonatologists.  Ms. Irina Zaks at Fibonacci Web Studio (https://fibonacciwebstudio.com/) collaborated with Dr. Bhatt and Ms. Janice Stillwell (Dr. Bhatt’s longtime Administrative Assistant) to transfer PDF data into a Web platform. Dr. Henry Lee representing the California Perinatal Quality Care Collaboratives (CPQCC), and Ms. Kimber Lee Padua, Clinical Research Coordinator (CPQCC) and Dr. Meera Sankar, Chair of CAN Research Committee have been essential. The leadership from CAN and CPQCC and the potential to link to existing CA NICU database have been key to facilitating this project. We are seeking input from NICUs and Neonatologists to verify that all of the information in the Web Directory is accurate and complete. We will provide a pathway to include additional information in the future. Discussions about provisions to protect security and levels of access are under review with CAN and our Neonatology colleagues.

The goal for this Web Directory is to provide an interactive, linked, and easy to use resource for training programs and for clinical and regulatory research networking.  For the site to be effective, NICUs and Neonatologists will need to take ownership and responsibility to update all of the data as needed and to give input regarding what additional information and function would be most important to enhance value and utility.