If you need a nurse cover for the birth of your child, you should be sure you have one, according to a new study.
The research, which was presented at the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists annual meeting, also suggests that you should have a neonatologist to assist you with your nursing care.
While this advice has been in place for years, the research is the first to examine the effect of neonatal cover on outcomes for newborns.
Dr. Joanne J. Langer, a professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, led the study.
“We wanted to look at the effects of neonatology on neonatal care outcomes,” she told The Globe and Mail.
“And we were surprised by the findings.”
Langer and her colleagues looked at data from 1,749 neonatal nurses, including 1,099 who worked in the United States.
The study found that neonatal coverage was linked to better outcomes for the newborns — such as better survival and a higher percentage of babies born alive — as well as higher rates of hospitalizations and neonatal mortality.
The researchers also found that cover was associated with less complications for newborn babies, as well.
However, the results of the study didn’t address the effect that a neonate nurse cover might have on newborns with more complex medical conditions, such as cerebral palsy or spinal cord injury.
Larger studies are needed to determine if neonatal nursing cover is associated with better outcomes.
“There are many factors that affect the neonatal outcome, but this study suggests that it’s not only the neonatologists that need to be involved, but the neonates themselves,” Langer said.
“If neonates with complex medical issues have neonatal covering, we might want to do something about that.”
For more information on neonatological cover, visit this link.