Recognise and manage neonatal infection

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Early-onset neonatal infection is a significant cause of mortality and morbidity in newborn babies. A term often used interchangeably with infection, ‘sepsis’ is a rare but serious complication defined as life-threatening organ dysfunction due to a dysregulated host response to infection (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), 2016). Without quick treatment, sepsis can lead to serious complications including in the worst instance, organ failure and potential risk of death. It is imperative therefore that midwives are able to identify potential risk factors and recognise the signs of infection in the newborn baby as early as possible so that appropriate management is undertaken and complications are avoided. The most recent NICE guidance (2012) covers prevention of infection within 72 hours of birth in healthy babies, which will be the focus of the following discussion
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages37
Specialist publicationMidwives
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2017


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