Kangaroo Mother Care during COVID-19 Pandemic
Thank you for the work that you are doing for babies and families.
As communities around the world respond to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, we want to be sure to keep information about Kangaroo Care and COVID-19 available to parents and healthcare professionals.
Accurate and timely information is essential. We keep receiving numerous questions regarding kangaroo care so we want to answer but we need your help. Here are some examples:
We received this message from a therapist from the UK:"Our nurses are worried about skin to skin and COVID-19 is there any response from anywhere saying it’s fine? In the nurses' hearts they know it is, but would be good to have something official"And this message from a nurse from Dubai:
"Hi just want to ask this time with Coronavirus can we still continue KMC? Because we don't know if mother exposed to Coronavirus outside"And this from a mom in the USA:
"I want to hold my baby but the nurse is not letting me get him out of the incubator. What can I do? Who says that kangaroo care has to stop altogether? I am going crazy and I want the best for my baby."
ISSUE 1: Message to clinicians:
Could anyone please help us by:
- Sharing with us any "official statement" recommendations, and/or resources from INK, WHO, Kangaroo Foundation, The USIKC, NIDCAP, UNICEF, AAP, NANN, or any organization that supports KMC, or from any of you that are experts on KMC regarding kangaroo care during COVID-19?
- Is there a different message for clinicians for NICU, Birth Kangaroo Care, and home kangaroo care?
- Are there any recommendations for specific screening, change clothes, clean the skin of the parent, wear a mask, etc., prior to KMC?
- What about visitation policies regarding KMC? This is an example of a visitation policy but only mentions breastfeeding moms. What about for KMC or babies that not yet breastfeed?
- The WHO has a statement about breastfeeding. Anyone please share with us their statement about kangaroo care, if there is one?
ISSUE 2: Message to parents:
Please provide your suggestions for revisions, addition, deletions to this statement that we (parents organizing the Kangaroo Care Day) want to share with parents:
"Babies need their parents especially at this stressful time, and the wellbeing of the babies and those caring for them is everyone's utmost priority. Parents that are allowed to enter the NICU after being properly screened for exposure and symptoms of COVID-19, are encouraged to KMC, after all, it reduces mortality and morbidities and is the safest, most relaxing and healing place for the baby and parent. (and we will also include any recommendations from above)"
Please help by commenting/discussing below or send an email to email@example.com
Time is of the essence. Thank you for your time and expertise.
Kangaroo Care Day Team
KMC regards to C19 pandemic as per recommendation of WHO and expert let’s look at to the benefits of KMC and indeed we need to continue KMC to boost the immunity of our babies not just C19 pandemic however our babies need it, is a must same thing with breastfeeding. We are looking forward to send and share more information that Breastfeeding and KMC to continue and disseminate globally for awareness of every one as if there’s a lot of confusion what to and to believe and we understand how we wanted to save our babies lives.
If a parent of a baby in the NICU has a fever or upper respiratory symptoms, they should not even be in the hospital. If they have no symptoms of illness, skin-to-skin holding is just as important as it ever was.
Email from Sue Ludington Hoe:
Yes, I have not published anything on the website yet, but we know that breastfeeding occurs during skin to skin and covid virus does not go into breast milk and continuing to breast feed may save lives by building immunity functions. Kangaroo Care (skin to skin) has similarly been shown with doubt to support and foster better immune functions by eliminating separation=based stress and by the release of oxytocin alone which goes to immune centers to promote healthy immune functions. The references are in the Learner’s Module for Immunity and on the KC bib which I am attaching (it is a word document and use control and F to get to the navigation function of Word and then type in immune kand all articles about immune function and immunity will start coming up for you. Hope this helps. Susie Ludington.
Thank you for this work. I had to contemplate this this week while I serve several community hospitals where often stable late preterm babies are managed in NICU.
Asked the mom and dad "Have you been exposed to anyone sick? "
" Told her that there is a chance that she may have it and does not know it but with the best assessment and data available that day, I explained that benefits of KC for an infant born 35 weeks weighing only 2000 with potential hypoglycemia and hypothermia was in my opinion greater than the potential that she may or may not have been exposed.
Our clinical group has not agreed upon KC as a group, but we are making every case a matter of assessment and careful consideration.
In uncertain times like this especially, the potential occurrences and increase of parental PTSDs post NICU weigh heavily on my clinician’s heart. Most parents would be willing to take the risk with us by agreeing that with today’s understanding, data, knowledge, KC benefits are still likely greater than separating moms and babies completely. Every day, we are asking the parents that they stay home if they learned that anyone they know or closely associated with are ill. We have seen moms being very very cooperative of that. Cameras in NICU that moms can access has helped for those who had to remain home.