Spotlight on: The Neuro-NICU

March 4, 2015 by

neuro nicu team

From left to right: Lisa Letzkus, Santina Zanelli, Jennifer Burnsed, and Kristen Heinan. Not pictured: Sarah Roberts

“The Neuro-NICU at the University of Virginia provides high-level specialized care for infants at risk of brain injury. We treat infants with conditions such as hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy, seizures, stroke, intraventricular hemorrhage, hydrocephalus and other brain malformations using a collaborative multidisciplinary approach. Our comprehensive team of specialists from neonatology, pediatric neurology, pediatric neurosurgery, neuroradiology and developmental pediatrics works together to provide the highest level of care for infants at risk of neurological injury,” said Dr. Santina Zanelli.

The Neuro-NICU Team is multidisciplinary and includes neonatology, pediatric neurology, developmental pediatrics, neurosurgery, PT/OT, and neuroradiology. The team coordinators are Lisa Letzkus (Developmental Pediatrics), Santina Zanelli (Neonatology), Jennifer Burnsed (Neonatology), Kristen Heinan (Pediatric Neurology), and Sarah Roberts (Neurosurgery).

The team’s goal is to deliver excellent clinical care to our infants with acquired brain injury and complex neurologic problems. This will include multidisciplinary recommendations for infant’s inpatient care from neurology and developmental, continuity of care prior to discharge with providers that will be caring for infant in clinic long-term, and education for providers and families.

There are Neuro-NICU Rounds, Bi-weekly Neuroradiology Rounds, and Quarterly Neuro-NICU Education Sessions:

  • Weekly Neuro-NICU Rounds – Rounds at bedside of included infants Fridays at 3PM with the Neuro-NICU team. A summary of recommendations and discussion from these rounds will be available in a plan of care note in Epic.
  • Bi-weekly Neuroradiology Rounds – Review of MRIs with Dr. Julie Matsumoto (neuroradiology) and neurology. On-service team will be notified of patients being discussed in each session so that they may attend. Occur in Moss Auditorium 1st and 3rd Tuesdays of month at 11AM.
  • Quarterly Neuro-NICU Education Session – Multidisciplinary discussion of an interesting case and topic with education geared towards LIPs. First session in January 2015. (Details TBA)

Questions or Suggestions? Please contact either Jen Burnsed ( or Santina Zanelli (


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