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Continuing evaluation of regionalized perinatal care: Community hospital neonatal convalescent care

, : Continuing evaluation of regionalized perinatal care: Community hospital neonatal convalescent care. Southern Medical Journal 86(8): 903-907

We describe the convalescent care of 169 back-transported (to community hospitals) and 285 eligible but not back-transported very low birth weight (VLBW) infants. Eligible infants who were not back transported to a level I or II community hospital were transferred to a level II nursery within the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) for convalescent care. Study infants were admitted to the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at MUSC from July 1985 through June 1989. They were admitted after maternal transport to MUSC for imminent delivery (N = 159), out-born community delivery (N = 55), or in-born MUSC delivery (N = 240). The mean +- SD birth weight and gestational age and the NICU admission diagnoses for the back-transported and non-back-transported neonates were similar. The mean +- SD weight of neonates at the time they were back transported was significantly greater than the weight of neonates at the time of intrahospital transfer. In contrast, the discharge weight to home and total days hospitalized were significantly less in the back-transported infants. Five back-transported neonates (3%) and 12 non-back-transported neonates (4%) were readmitted to the NICU. The back-transported infants used more than 3,800 bed days at community hospitals that would otherwise have been spent in the regional center, thus facilitating increased parental and primary physician involvement in their care.


PMID: 8351551

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