The Family Nurture Intervention (FNI) study was developed by Dr. Martha Welch at the Nurture Science program at Columbia University Medical Center. It is a randomized controlled clinical trial in the NICU at Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital, Columbia University Medical Center. The FNI has demonstrated that hospital-based family nurture can help prevent or overcome emotional, behavioral and developmental problems in prematurely born infants. The goal of the intervention is to restore a state of co-regulation between mother and infant by facilitating a calming, emotional connection, which serves to improve a mother’s confidence and enhance her maternal behavior. Study results include
increases in infant brain activity in the frontal polar region, enhanced maternal care giving behavior, and reduced levels of maternal anxiety and depressive systems.