Improving Care for Low Birth Weight Infants in the Era of Covid-19 Pandemic: A Systematic Literature Review
Background: Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) acute respiratory syndrome, also known as COVID-19, has spread exponentially around the world. COVID-19 attacks all age groups including the neonatal group because of the very high infection rate. Low birth weight (LBW) babies are a population that is susceptible to contracting COVID-19 because of their immature immune system. LBW is at risk of experiencing vertical and horizontal transmission due to COVID-19 with the controversial management of LBW care. Therefore, improving evidence-based LBW care in the era COVID-19 pandemic with infection control measures is needed to prevent the risk of transmitting LBW due to COVID-19. Purpose: This study aims to provide understanding and evidence on caring related to COVID-19 infection in LBW which is considered to reduce the threat of COVID-19 in LBW. Methods: A systematic literature review was carried out by following the Update Preferred Reporting Item for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analysis (PRISMA) to gain insight into LBW care in the era COVID-19 pandemic. Specifically, the Scopus, PubMed, Google Scholar, Science Direct, and ProQuest databases were searched to identify relevant articles. Of the 274 research articles produced, 14 met the inclusion criteria and were included in the review. Results: LBW care in the era Covid-19 pandemic such as breastfeeding, kangaroo method care, and living with mothers in accordance with infection control measures are important to increase scientific awareness about LBW care to prevent LBW contracting Covid-19. Conclusion: The risk of LBW infection around the time of birth is low when precautions to protect the baby are taken. The risk of short-term and long-term impact of LBW care if mother breastfeed and rooming-in are using infection control measures appears to be smaller than the physical separation of infants and not breastfeeding in this pandemic era.
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