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Shaw C, Gallagher K, Petty J, Mancini A, Boyle B. Neonatal nursing during the COVID-19 global pandemic: A thematic analysis of personal reflections. J Neonatal Nurs. 2021 Mar 19. doi: 10.1016/j.jnn.2021.03.011. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 33758571; PMCID: PMC7973062.

Background: The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in significant changes and restrictions to neonatal care. The aim of this study was to explore the impact of these changes on Neonatal Nurses globally.

Methods: We conducted a thematic analysis on written reflections by neonatal nurses worldwide, exploring their experiences of COVID-19. Twenty-two reflections were analysed from eleven countries.

Results: Thematic analysis revealed 4 main themes relating to the nurses’ role: 1) protector 2) challenges to human quality of care 3) vulnerability and 4) resilience. The measures taken as protector were described as compromising the human qualities of care fundamental to their role. This tension, together with other new challenges, heightened feelings of vulnerability. Concurrently, nurses identified role resilience, including resourcefulness and peer support, which allowed them to navigate the global pandemic.

Conclusion: By identifying global challenges and strategies to overcome these, neonatal nurses may be better equipped as the pandemic continues. The reflections underscore the importance of family integrated care and the tension created when it is compromised.

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