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Maternity Department at UHG wins Irish Healthcare Centre Award

A team from the Maternity Department at University Hospital Galway won the Midwifery Led Project at the recent Irish Healthcare Centre Awards for their quality improvement project on preventing hypothermia in newborn babies admitted to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. This quality improvement project has resulted in a reduction in the number of babies who have to be admitted to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and an increase in breastfeeding rates by 9%.

Jean James, Registered Advanced Nurse Practitioner and project lead said, “ Newborn babies are not born cold and they cannot shiver to regulate their body temperature themselves so we must intervene to make sure that their temperature does not fall below 36.5°c which is considered mild hypothermia in babies.

As this is a problem worldwide, the WHO developed 10 steps of the Warm Chain and we made improvements in 7 of the steps and have had no cases of neonatal hypothermia from the gynaecology theatre this year. The biggest change involved moving from wrapping newborn babies in towels, which was the usual practice, to wrapping the babies in blankets and pre-warming the clothes and blankets for all babies. Our slogan is ‘I’m just Born, Keep me Warm’.”

Ms Chris Kane, General Manager, GUH added, “We are exceptionally proud of the team in the Maternity Department for their ongoing work to improve outcomes for our patients, in particular the babies who spend time in our Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.”

Photo Caption:
Catherine Meagher from the School of Nursing and Midwifery, NUI Galway (on left) who presented the Irish Healthcare Centre Award to the Maternity Department at University Hospital Galway represented by, from left, Helen Murphy, Director of Midwifery; Jean James, Registered Advanced Nurse Practitioner; and Dr Ethel Ryan, Consultant Neonatologist.


The article above is specific to the following Saolta hospitals:: 
University Hospital Galway (UHG)