Neonatal/Newborn reviews and high care admissions

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Neonatal/newborn care and neonatal intensive care admissions

Neonatal care happens in the initial twenty-eight days of life. Usually, the neonatal care unit reserves space for premature, underweight babies or infants that are unwell. With a neonate in the intensive care unit, a mother goes through a whirlwind of emotions.

The whole experience can be quite stressful, and that's why it's vital to prioritise care for the baby.

Skin-to-skin contact or kangaroo care, talk and play therapy are essential at this point. Medical staff will also encourage the mother to change her baby’s nappies and become part of the daily neonatal routine to establish a bond and become more confident as a parent.

What is neonatal care?

Neonatal care is specialised care that includes managing premature babies or babies due to low birth weight, congenital disabilities or underlying illnesses. There are separate units in the ward to treat different conditions. It’s in this particular unit where the baby’s heart rate, oxygen levels, blood sugar and body temperature are monitored, and IV medication and fluids can be administered if required.

Neonatal intensive care unit is for babies who require urgent medical care to facilitate their breathing and heart rate. It helps to check up on your baby from time to time and remain hopeful that he or she will eventually recover after adequate care.

What equipment is available in the neonatal intensive care unit?

Seeing your baby attached to different tubes and probes is worrisome but being patient at this time helps to relieve one’s fears. Dr Vahed closely monitors your baby in the neonatal intensive care unit and carries out regular checks together with the nursing team to ensure that he or she is healthy. Parents are always kept up-to-date on any changes in their baby’s condition. The team will explain all the type of equipment your child requires and the reason for the admission.

Common equipment used in the nursery includes-
  • Incubators are transparent containers which stabilise your baby’s body temperature.
  • Ventilators and oxygen support: Ventilators assist premature babies to breathe because their lungs have not developed fully.
  • Feeding tubes: Orogastric or nasogastric tubes carry breast milk or formula to ensure the baby is adequately fed
  • Phototherapy light or blanket: Is used when a baby develops jaundice and can treat it if the blood levels are high.
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