Topical umbilical cord care at birth

RHL practical aspects by Capurro H

FIRST CONTACT (PRIMARY CARE) LEVEL

We have no specific recommendation at this level of care because there are not strong evidence of the benefit of implementation of the practice studied by Zupan´s review. Only general practices, as cleaning procedures during labor and neonatal care, hand washing, use of clean material, paying attention to hygiene conditions and early breast feeding, must be promoted. These interventions to achieve some benefit, must be simultaneously implemented.

REFERRAL HOSPITAL (SECONDARY CARE) LEVEL

Again, no recommendations at this level of care can be made in relation to the procedures assessed in this review. Hospital should implement and monitor strict cleaning procedures in labor wards, neonatal intensive and rooming-in sectors. It is necessary to build an “Infection Committee” integrated by training personnel with capacity to control cross infection, implement guidelines and procedures, teach health workers, disseminate their activities to allow the early detection of the problems.

AT HOME OR IN THE COMMUNITY

The message to the population must show the relationship between infection and poor hygiene and indicate the importance of these aspects in neonatal life. Also it is necessary to teach the family to recognize signs of umbilical cord infection in order to seek early assistance.


This document should be cited as: Capurro H. Topical umbilical cord care at birth: RHL practical aspects : RHL practical aspects (last revised:30 September 2004 The WHO Reproductive Health Library; Geneva: World Health Organization.

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