Some parents are telling us they become confused when they go looking for support from The Possums Clinic or the Possums programs in Brisbane! In fact, Possums has at no time re-branded.
Despite statements to the contrary (including representation on Google Ads), Possums is NOT the general practices known as Grow Medical, recently rebranded as Growlife Medical. Grow Medical or Growlife Medical does not have health professionals accredited in Neuroprotective Developmental Care or the Possums programs, and Grow Medical or Growlife Medical health professionals are not part of our NDC education networks. Grow Medical or Growlife Medical website information for parents with babies is not aligned with the evidence-based Possums or NDC content. Possums is an highly ethical, values-based health promotion charity, which offers specialised, evidence-based programs known as Neuroprotective Developmental Care, or the Possums programs.
There is only one Possums Clinic in Brisbane, which is now both F2F and online. We have noticed providers being promoted as 'Possums practitioners' or 'fully accredited in the Possums programs' when the practitioner/s have completed only Introductory Workshops (previously known as Certification). Use of the terms 'Possums practitioner' or 'fully accredited in the Possums programs' is misleading and we do not consent to their use. There is no difference between the Possums programs and Neuroprotective Developmental Care, which are different names for the same set of programs. If you come across promotions using the term 'Possums practitioner' or 'fully accredited in the Possums programs', we recommend that you clarify whether that provider is Possums Certified, that is, has completed only an Introductory Workshop/s, or is NDC Accredited. NDC Accredited practitioners are able to show you their NDC provider logo (see bottom right hand corner).
We are delighted that well over 1000 health professionals have completed Introductory Workshops. But we can only attest to the quality of the programs delivered by NDC Accredited Practitioners (also referred to as NDC providers). NDC Accreditation demonstrates that your health professional has been willing to invest in very substantial specialised upskilling, including Masterclasses, clinical observation, and case discussions, accredited by the various health professional Colleges, and has studied for and passed an examination. NDC Accreditation also ensures your health professional has access to our Resource Hub, which includes a wealth of parent handout resources and videos for use in consultations with you. (Please note: there is an NDC disclaimer at the bottom of each legitimate Possums handout.) NDC Accredited Practitioners and those in the NDC accreditation pathway are part of our lively and collaborative professional networks, receiving ongoing education in the ever-evolving research literature, as programs are updated or new programs developed.
We require all providers who wish to promote use of the Possums programs to state clearly whether they are Possums Certified or NDC Accredited, and to accompany any mention of Possums with a link through to our charity's website. If there aren't prominent links through to www.possumsonline.com, please think carefully about why a business might aim to benefit financially from the reputation of Possums or Dr Pamela Douglas's name, yet at the same time refuse to publically link parents through to our free resources, online parent programs, and the evidence-base (which have been built up over many years of work and research). If you come across promotions for services which actually copy text from our possumsonline.com website, or refer to key characteristics of our distinct programs (such as our sleep program or our five domains or When Baby Comes Home), unaccompanied by public acknowledgements of NDC Accreditation and links to our website, we remind you how difficult this can be to control. Unfortunately, the processes required to forcibly address inappropriate use of qualifications, titles, and programs often cost far more than a small, courageous charity, which is simply trying to make a difference, can afford. Those who give their lives to unfunded, values-based innovation are very vulnerable in a world dominated by business interests, and we ask for your support.
In the event that the Board of Directors of Possums for Mothers and Babies determines that NDC or Possums training qualifications or the Possums name are being used by an inidividual or an organisation in a way that is misleading to parents, the Board will, if a warning is not responded to, withdraw the right for that individual or organisation to use those qualifications or use of the Possums name.
Here is some background information that may be helpful.
The Possums Clinic first offered clinical services in 2011 - 2012, managed by UQ HealthCare, Annerley, Brisbane. Our charity then opened clinic doors independently at Highgate Hill, Brisbane, from April 2015 until October 2017. In October 2017, the clinical services arm of our charity sold the Highgate Hill clinic infrastructure, and The Possums Clinic entered a management partnership with Sante Medical Services, which operates three Grow Medical clinics and also two Allergy First clinics. The partnership ended in April 2018 when Dr Pamela Douglas resigned as Medical Director and Grow Medical terminated her contract. The NDC Accredited Practitioners who had worked closely with Dr Douglas delivering the Possums programs also departed from Grow Medical. The Possums Clinic relocated, and operates out of the Possums Education and Research Centre, Greenslopes, Brisbane, collaborating with NDC Accredited practitioner Renee Keogh to provide online and F2F consultations, Shared Medical Appointments, and When Baby Comes Home classes in a successful new management partnership with Paeds in a Pod, who support the Possums Clinic's commitment to education and research. Our services are now also available through The Possums Clinic Online.
Possums for Mothers and Babies Ltd has licensed and will continue to license, groups or organisations the rights to use the Possums Intellectual Property (Neuroprotective Developmental Care NDC or Possums programs), including the name The Possums Clinic, under strictly protected conditions. These conditions include appropriate use of our logos in association with any use of the name, including links to our website, education resources, and our evidence-base, and also include conditional time constraints designed to maintain program and brand fidelity, so that the Possums name is only ever associated with the highest calibre care for new families. A Possums Clinic comprises only NDC Accredited Practitioners (one or more), individually approved by Possums for Mothers and Babies. If those conditions are not met, the licence is withdrawn.
Currently there is only one Possums Clinic, though our NDC Accredited practitioners are currently moving to set up their own. Excitingly, we now have a growing number of early adopter NDC accredited practitioners offering our unique, high calibre, evidence-based programs. Take a look on our 'Find an NDC Practitioner' page!