Kangaroo Mother Care can help low-birth weight babies to survive in Rural India.


Kangaroo Mother Care can help low-birth weight babies to survive in Rural India.
Lokesh S
Neurosurgery
Kangaroo Mother Care can help low-birth weight babies to survive in Rural India.

Kangaroo Mother Care can help low-birth weight babies to survive in Rural India.

On 25 Oct 2016, Renuka Hadapad gave birth to triplets in Koppal district; Karnataka and each were weighing less than 1500 grams. Kangaroo Mother Care along with care and support given by the staff of the district hospital helped Renuka in saving these very low birth weight triplets.

 Reported incidence of delivery of triplet in India varies between 1 in 642 to 1 in 2660 deliveries and is higher in pregnancies due to in vitro fertilization and controlled ovarian hyper stimulation with gonadotropins .Almost one-third of triplet pregnancies had a history of ovulation induction. Prevention and management of these high-risk pregnancies requires early prenatal diagnosis and counselling of the couple

Kangaroo mother care is care of preterm infants carried skin-to-skin with the mother. It is a powerful, easy-to-use method to promote the health and well-being of infants born preterm as well as full-term.

Its key features are

  • Early, continuous and prolonged skin-to-skin contact between the mother and the baby; 
  • Exclusive breastfeeding (ideally);  it is initiated in hospital and can be continued at home; 
  • Small babies can be discharged early;  mothers at home require adequate support and follow-up; 
  • It is a gentle, effective method that avoids the agitation routinely experienced in a busy ward with preterm infants.

WHO recommends “Kangaroo Mother Care” for low-birth weight or premature babies and exclusive breastfeeding as soon as they are born. Kangaroo mother care is continuous skin-to-skin contact between mothers and child. Kangaroo Mother Care is only effective when done for long periods of time until a baby weighs over 2500 grams or no longer wants to stay confined in skin-to-skin contact. WHO is working in three districts in India with funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.  Just after the first year of the programme, coverage has increased from nearly 0% to more than 40%.

Image source: who.int