PINEHURST – Moore County’s New Year’s baby will probably have a distinction in addition to being the first little guy or girl to be born in FirstHealth Moore Regional Hospital in 2015.
If all goes well and without complication he/she will be part of the hospital’s first “couplet care” mother-and-baby pair. Moore Regional will introduce the program on Jan.1
With couplet care, a mother and baby are cared for by the same nurse for an entire shift. Nurses will usually be assigned three to four couplets each per shift, allowing for complete and personalized care.
“The baby stays in the room with Mom throughout the hospital stay, unless there is a problem or Mom needs some uninterrupted rest,” says Tricia Lerma, R.N., Moore Regional’s clinical director of Women & Children’s Services.
According to Lerma, this “rooming in” is strongly encouraged. “It is healthier for new babies to be with their moms in the earliest days of life,” she says. “Research shows that both Mom and baby sleep better while in the same room and that it reduces Mom’s stress. Although moms are still in charge of their own care and that of their babies, medical considerations and other factors may not allow for the baby to stay with Mom the entire stay.”
Even after the implementation of couplet care, the hospital’s nursery will remain open and available for the times when babies need to be cared for there and not in the mother’s room. When the nursery is empty, the nursery nurse will be assigned other duties such as caring for the babies in labor and delivery immediately after birth.
“The health of the mother and baby are our number one priority at Moore Regional,” says Kendra Groff, R.N., administrative director of Women & Children’s Services. “The team works with mothers and families to make sure mothers recover safely from their birth experience. Women who have had a C-section are not expected to lift, bend or move unsafely and will be given the support and assistance they need from the nursing staff.”
After C-sections, which are done in the hospital’s main operating room, babies are taken to a special area to be assessed until the mother’s surgery is complete and she is moved to the recovery room.
“We make every effort to bring mom and baby together in the OR recovery area for bonding and breastfeeding if Mom chooses to do so,” Groff says.