The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has published a quality standard focusing on neonatal respiratory support in hospital for babies born preterm (before 37 weeks of pregnancy).
The quality standard describes how services should provide the following priority areas of improvement:
- Preterm babies should have respiratory support soon after birth and before admission to the neonatal unit and should be given continuous positive airways pressure, if clinically appropriate, rather than invasive ventilation.
- Preterm babies should be given surfactant if needed using a minimally invasive technique if they do not need invasive ventilation.
- Preterm babies having invasive ventilation should be given volume-targeted ventilation in combination with synchronised ventilation.
- Preterm babies should have a target oxygen saturation of 91% to 95% after stabilisation.
- Parents and carers of preterm babies who are having respiratory support are helped to care for their baby. Commissioners should ensure that they commission services to help parents and carers be involved in their baby’s care, have access to their baby 24 hours a day and involved in ward rounds. They should also be made aware of the psychological support that is available to them.