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Improving Health Outcomes for Pediatric Feeding Disorder


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Full course description










This program does not lead to certification

Pediatric Feeding Disorder (PFD) is impaired oral intake that is not age-appropriate and is associated with medical, nutritional, feeding skill and/or psychosocial dysfunction. According to evaluation data, it is estimated that PFD affects more than 2.3 million children under the age of 5 in the United States each year. For families with an infant or child with a Pediatric Feeding Disorder, every bite of food can be painful, stressful and sometimes impossible, which can impede nutrition, development, growth and overall health and well-being.

Management of Pediatric Feeding Disorder (PFD) requires assessment and treatment methods from an interdisciplinary perspective — bringing together psychologists, nutritionists, physicians, occupational therapists and speech-language pathologists. PFD coexists with developmental and organic conditions and can affect children from newborn through school age.

This program provides the foundational knowledge and practice-based skills across disciplines to facilitate integrated care of children with Pediatric Feeding Disorder. This course includes an overview of typical development and anatomy needed for healthy feeding and evaluation and treatment methods provided by physicians, Board-Certified Speech-Language Pathologists, Board-Certified Occupational Therapists, Registered Dieticians and Psychologists.

Supplemental material on lactation and serving children with PFD is available at no additional cost. The lactation module is provided by an IBCLC RN and IBCLC SLP. The focus is lactation and supporting children with PFD.

The following topics will be covered in the supplemental material:

  • The role of a lactation consultant
  • A & P and mechanics of the lactating breast
  • Composition of breastmilk vs formula
  • Assessment of the breastfeeding dyad
  • Breastfeeding management
  • Working as a team: Multi-disciplinary approach
  • Breastfeeding the medically complex infant
  • Failure to thrive

By completing this course, a participant should be able to:

  • Identify the fundamental components of feeding development and disorders.
  • Evaluate feeding skill acquisition in infants and children.
  • Understand feeding assessment methodologies and treatment options for infants and children.
  • Describe interprofessional roles and responsibilities for professionals providing feeding services to children.
  • Understand the role of a pediatric feeding team and what to do if access to a pediatric feeding team is unavailable.
  • Use information from specialty medical, behavioral and nutrition fields to plan and augment current feeding practices.

Participants must:

  1. Complete Core Modules with 80% accuracy on all assessments.
  2. Submit a pre-course survey prior to beginning the course.
  3. Submit a post-course survey upon completion of the final module.

Who this course is designed for:

It is intended for health care providers such as physicians, physician assistants, advanced practice providers, nurses, occupational therapists, speech-language pathologists, audiologists, psychologists, dieticians, health professions students and others who are practicing in one of the medical areas listed above.