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Litmanovitz I, Silberstein D, Butler S, Vittner D. Care of hospitalized infants and their families during the COVID-19 pandemic: an international survey. J Perinatol. 2021 Mar 23:1–7. doi: 10.1038/s41372-021-00960-8. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 33758385; PMCID: PMC7985585.

This research study explored changes in family-centered care practices for hospitalized infants and families due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This exploratory descriptive study used a 49-item online survey, distributed to health care professionals working with hospitalized infants and families. The sample consisted of 96 participants from 22 countries. Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, 87% of units welcomed families and 92% encouraged skin-to-skin care. During the pandemic, family presence was restricted in 83% of units, while participation in infant care was restricted in 32%. Medium-sized (20-40 beds) units applied less restriction than small (<20 beds) units (p = 0.03). Units with single-family rooms that did not restrict parental presence, implemented fewer restrictions regarding parents’ active participation in care (p = 0.02). Restrictions to families were not affected by geographic infection rates or developmental care education of health care professionals. Restrictions during the pandemic increased separation between the infant and family.

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