An international study on implementation and facilitators and barriers for parent-infant closeness in neonatal units
journal contributionposted on 2023-06-10, 03:55 authored by Heike RabeHeike Rabe, Nicole R van Veenendaal, Nanon H M Labrie, Mader Silke, Anne A M W van Kempen, Sophie R D van der Schoor, Johannes B van Goudoever, CROWN Study Group
Importance Parent-infant closeness and active parent participation in neonatal care are important for parent and infant health. Objective To give an overview of current neonatal settings and gain in-depth understanding on facilitators and barriers for parent-infant closeness, zero-separation, in 19 countries. Methods Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) professionals, representing 45 NICUs from a range of geographic regions in Europe and Canada, were purposefully selected and interviewed June-December 2018. Thematic analysis was conducted to identify, analyze and report patterns (themes) for parent-infant closeness across the entire series of interviews. Results Parent-infant separation during infant and/or maternity care is very common (42/45 units, 93%), despite implementation of family integrated care (FICare) practices, including parent participation in medical rounds (17/45, 38%), structured education sessions for parents (16/45, 36%) and structured training for healthcare professionals (22/45, 49%). NICU professionals encountered four main themes with facilitators and barriers for parent-infant closeness on and between the hospital, unit, staff and family-level: Culture (jointly held characteristics, values, thinking and behaviours about parental presence and participation on the unit), Collaboration (the act of working together between and within different levels), Capacities (resources and policies), and Coaching (education to acquire and transfer knowledge and skills). Interpretation Implementing parent-infant closeness in the NICU is still challenging for healthcare professionals. Further optimization in neonatal care towards zero-separation and parent-infant closeness can be achieved by enforcing the ‘four Cs for Closeness’: Culture, Collaboration, Capacities, and Coaching.
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