The objective of this toolkit is to support the optimisation of maternal breast milk (MBM) supply and breastfeeding for preterm babies from before birth to discharge from the neonatal unit.
The toolkit focuses on 5 core elements that support the optimisation of early MBM:
- Parents as equal partners in their baby’s care: Parents are empowered to take part in all elements of their baby's care, facilitating strong close and loving attachments.
- Antenatal education: Educating families about the value of MBM in prematurity, importance and process of early expressing.
- Initiation of expressing soon after birth (aim within 2 hours): With easy access to support, training and equipment.
- Early Colostrum (ideally within 6 hours of birth and always within 24 hours): MBM to be the first enteral feed given to baby.
- Early and regular parental physical contact with their baby: Delivery room contact, skin-to-skin early and often
The toolkit will introduce some basic QI tools and methods that are quick to learn and easy to apply. It does not intend to replicate any existing local or national QI activity undertaken in the area of focus but to complement these endeavours with a practical step-by-step guide.
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