Christie Lawrence

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Christie N Lawrence RNC-NIC, MS, APN/CNS

  • Clinical Nurse Specialist- Neonatal Intensive Care Unit RUMC
  • Instructor, College of Nursing, Women, Children and Family Nursing

MS- University of Illinois (Chicago campus) (UIC)

BSN- Mennonite College of Nursing, Bloomington-Normal, Illinois

 

Christie Lawrence began her career at Rush as a staff nurse in the NICU 14 yrs ago. She enjoyed working with parents and families facilitating  unit based activities such as CPR, discharge teaching and “Rush Mother’s Milk Club.”  Mrs. Lawrence became interested in the benefits of breastfeeding after working in the NICU at RUMC and having her second child. As a young mother, she felt that in some units, parents were not given the opportunity to make an informed consent regarding breast or bottle feedings. The question she received following delivery of her son, was simply “breast or bottle?” At the time she did not understand the benefits of breastfeeding, and was hurt as she reflected on her experience. Not having a breastfeeding role model in her family or community, made the question of formula feeding an easy choice. However after becoming a NICU RN her desire was to share benefits, and culturally sensitive information to allow parents to make an informed  choice about infant feeding.

The evidence supporting “Milk as Medicine” led her back to school to pursue a degree that would allow her to be a change agent. She graduated with a Master of Science in Perinatal Nursing and accepted a position as the Clinical Nurse Specialist in the NICU and a Nursing Instructor in the College of Nursing. In this dual role, Christie coordinates and implements staff education, unit policies and community offerings. She also provides education to new nursing students through classroom lectures and hands on clinical instruction. In her current role as a student in the DNP program, she plans to study the role of breastfeeding peer counselors in the immediate newborn period to increase initiation and duration of breastfeeding.