Safe and Effective Infection Prevention for Inpatient Newborn Care

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A Do No Harm Technical Brief

Infections account for about a quarter of the annual 2.8 million newborn deaths, constituting the third most important cause of neonatal mortality. They can result in several immediate and long-term complications that can, in turn, lead to significant morbidity, increased treatment cost and to approximately 3% of all disability-adjusted life-years. Newborns, particularly preterm and low birth weight (LBW) babies, are very susceptible to infections because of their immature immune systems. They are also more exposed to organisms due to their total dependency on care providers. Infections may be transmitted vertically from the mother or horizontally from caregivers and the environment. This brief highlights the current evidence-based practices for the promotion of infection prevention for newborns receiving inpatient care.

The Every Preemie—SCALE project is pleased to share the Do No Harm Technical Brief Series. This series highlights the safe and effective use of specific inpatient newborn care interventions, with the guiding principle of “Do No Harm”. The briefs are designed to provide stakeholders with evidence-based information regarding safe and effective inpatient care in low-resource settings as an important step to avoid harm and improve health outcomes for newborns. See complete series here. 

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