September 2022 – Preemie Professional

Heather Batman, MS, OTR, BCP, CNT, NTMTC
Occupational Therapist, Beyond Preemie, PLLC

Together we can guide your baby to greatness. – Heather Batman

PREEMIEWORLD: How long have you been working in your field?

HEATHER: 20 years

PREEMIEWORLD: Why did you choose your current profession?

HEATHER:  My progressional career path and having my own baby with feeding and swallowing difficulties, including trouble gaining weight and meeting developmental milestones, along with the barriers that arose trying to navigate the medical system, inspired me to open my practice, Beyond Preemie, integrating my expertise into my community to support and optimize infant care, changing the trajectory of infant outcomes. I look back on my journey with refreshed eyes and now deeply understand my path. I will forever be grateful to my son and our journey. My child is thriving, and my journey led me here, helping others through Beyond Preemie. I want to walk alongside families through their journey. Helping families feel supported, being a trusted resource, and helping to navigate the medical system so families may get the resources and answers they need and want.

PREEMIEWORLD:  What do you want other professionals to know about what you do?

HEATHER: I am a neonatal occupational therapist with 20 years of feeding and developmental expertise. I began my neonatal therapy career in a level 4 NICU in a large medical center children’s hospital. In 2006 I started the journey of developing and growing a neonatal therapy program in a level III NICU, guiding the NICU’s quality improvement team to integrate family-centered care, neuropromotive care practices, and therapeutic interventions as NICU standards of care. In 2015 I co-developed and managed a high-risk follow-up clinic serving birth to 3 years. I hold my NIDCAP and NTMTC certifications, my advanced board certification in pediatrics, and am a certified neonatal therapist. I am also a research co-investigator for Improving Long-Term Neurodevelopmental Outcomes of Low Birth Weight and Extremely Premature Infants, currently in the process of being submitted for publication. I am the owner and founder of Beyond Preemie, PLLC.

PREEMIEWORLD:  What advice do you give to preemie parents?

HEATHER: We each have our own individual journey. You are not alone. We can get through this together.

PREEMIEWORLD: Fun Facts: Tell us a fun or quirky fact about you:

HEATHER: On weekends, I like to think of my kitchen as “Iron Chef Kitchen Stadium.”