Before a newborn is discharged from the hospital, nurses are supposed to examine the baby to ensure that there is no health issues or disorders that could lead to infant disabilities or mortality. In this article, we look at such precautions that nurses should take to ensure that the alterations mentioned above do not occur.
Timely Detection of Newborn Disorders before Discharge
Timely detection of health disorders in babies allows for early intervention and reduces the chances of a child growing up with health complications. It is essential for the nurse to enlighten the family on why a newborn’s screening is necessary before the baby and the mother are discharged from the hospital. The hospital personnel should emphasize on telling the parents of the long-term benefits of the screening, this will allow for treatment of any detected disorder and arrangement of a follow-up care program. Looking at the bigger picture, early detection and timely treatment will help reduce the number of infant mortality, disabilities and morbidity. (Susan Ward, Shelton Hisley, p. 703)
The major tests that the nurses should emphasis on when running the newborn’s screening before discharge include:
Congenital Heart Disease is among the common disorders detected at child birth, it accounts for 6%-10% of infant mortality and 30%-50% of all child deaths caused by congenital malformations (PMC, 2016)
Biotinidase deficiency is a health disorder that makes the body unable to recycle the biotin vitamin, in its absence, the body suffers from insufficient supply of essential nutrients. Babies who get screened at birth can be treated effectively usually get to grow up healthy and normal development (“Baby’s First Test – https://www.babysfirsttest.org”).
Phenylketonuria – This is a genetic metabolic alteration. In every 10,000 to 30,000 child births, at least one child is born with this condition. It is likely to cause damage to the central nervous system of the body if not detected and treated in time (Shelton Hisley, p. 703).
PMC. (2016). Universal Pulse Oximetry Screening for Early Detection of Critical Congenital Heart Disease. PMC, 10, 35.
Susan Ward, Shelton Hisley. (n.d.). Maternal – Child Nursing Care (second ed.). Lisa Houck.