Preemie Matters – February 2014

In this issue of Preemie Matters: American Academy of Pediatrics Policy Statement and Clinical Reports on Preemie Care • Preemies Today •Talking to Preemies in the NICU Improves Language Skills  • Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome Symposium • Increasing Human Milk Consumption in the NICU  • Mark Your Calendar for 2014 Conference

AAP Policy Statement & Clinical Reports on Preemie Care

A new policy statement and two clinical reports published last month by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) address the care of preterm infants. The policy statement covers respiratory support at birth, suggesting that clinicians consider the use of CPAP at or soon after birth with subsequent selective surfactant, as an alternative to routine intubation with prophylactic or early surfactant administration. A clinical report on surfactant replacement therapy updates a 2008 clinical report and underscores the policy statement's message about the use of CPAP. The second clinical report provides guidance, a literature review, and a cost-benefit analysis on the use of inhaled nitric oxide for preemies.

Preemies Today

Preemies Today is a nonprofit organization based in the Washington, D.C. area that provides families with the latest prematurity education, a parent-to-parent support group, preemie care packages, hosts family outings, and initiated a local preemie playgroup. Preemies Today sends out a monthly e-newsletter, hosts Facebook chats, and can also be found on Twitter. Along with the SIDS Mid-Atlantic group, Preemies Today will host a support group on Thursday, March 6th for anyone affected by the loss of a baby. The event's goal is to provide an inclusive, understanding, and patient environment where families and preemies can come together for support, education, and to discuss their own NICU experiences.

Talking to Preemies in the NICU Improve Language Skills

new study published in the journal Pediatrics suggests that exposing preemies to more adult, conversational language in the NICU pays off in their language abilities at 18 months, leading researchers to conclude: "We need to provide more information to families about the importance of talking to these babies in the neonatal ICU." The study - which included a cohort of 36 preterm infants with average age of gestation of 27 weeks and average weight 2.7 pounds - found that for every increase of 100 adult words per hour a baby heard at 32 weeks, there was a 2-point improvement in language scores. "Children learn from conversations going on around them, but the back and forth communication is the most important," says senior author Dr. Betty Vohr, Alpert Medical School at Brown University. "This just really involves talking to moms and informing them that you have an important role here, and you can make a big difference for your baby."

Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome Symposium

Pennsylvania Premie Network will host a Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS) Symposium, "Understanding the Care and Management of the Addicted Mother and Baby," March 18 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at two on-site locations -Philadelphia and Harrisburg, PA - in addition to webinar. Attendance is free and lunch will be provided at this event aimed at neonatologists, pediatricians, ob/gyns, nurses and nurse practitioners, NICU staff, newborn nursery staff, early intervention professionals, and agencies serving preterm babies and their families. The symposium includes two morning speakers sessions, followed by an afternoon panel discussion. For more information, contact Dottie Schell, Program Director, Pennsylvania Premie Network,1-888-523-6122 (PA only) or (484) 446-3061.

Increasing Human Milk Consumption in the NICU

Breastfeeding basics for all RNs, human milk donations for all infants under 33 weeks, and becoming a collection site for donated milk are just three best practices that emerged from Medela's new effort highlighting successes in increasing human milk consumption in the NICU. After a nationwide call for submissions for its Human Milk Breast Practices in the NICU, Medela is supporting first place winner Memorial Hospital of Gulfport, Mississippi and runner up Rainbow Babies and Children's Hospital University Hospitals Case Medical Center, Cleveland, Ohio with $10,000 and $5,000 in product awards, respectively. NICUs working to increase human milk consumption around preemies can learn more about these leading strategies.


Information is reported as provided and does not necessarily represent the view of the National Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Coalition. A complete copy of HMHB’s disclaimer is available on our website.