Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center established the Perinatal Institute in February 2009 to help improve the health of newborns. Here are some of our initiatives:
Partnering with Community Physicians Ensures Better Outcomes
Neonatologists from Cincinnati Children’s work in close partnership with area healthcare providers to identify fetal health concerns as early as possible before delivery. Because our physicians work side by side with OB / GYNs on site in most area hospitals, we are informed of significant health issues before a baby’s birth and can plan for appropriate interventions.
Physicians from the Division of Neonatology are available to attend high-risk deliveries in the region, ensuring the safest possible delivery and post-natal care for mother and infant.
Collaboration Keeps Babies and Mothers Together
Studies have proven the importance of keeping mothers and their premature newborns together. By working in close collaboration with our healthcare partners in the community, we have lowered the number of babies born beyond 32 weeks’ gestation who require transfer to a Level III nursery by more than half.
Cincinnati Children’s Perinatal Outreach Program
The Cincinnati Children’s Perinatal Outreach Program (CCPOP) provides professional education, training and consultative services to perinatal healthcare providers throughout the Tristate region.
Lowering Infant Mortality − Our Ongoing Goal
Our research demonstrates that babies born before 32 weeks’ gestation at a Level I or II center have a greater chance of dying or facing complications than those born at a Level III center. We work with area obstetricians to facilitate transfers of mothers in preterm labor before their 32nd week of pregnancy to a Level III perinatal center, reducing the risk of newborn deaths and morbidities.
“Healthy People 2010” is a set of national health objectives aimed at reducing the most significant preventable health threats. We exceeded one of the Healthy People 2010 goals: Approximately 90 percent of preterm babies born before 32 weeks in our region are now delivered in Level III centers.
Partnering with Local Public Health Departments to Help Reduce Fetal and Infant Mortality
The Perinatal Institute provides support and expertise for the Fetal Infant Mortality Review Committee (FIMR), a joint program of the Cincinnati Department of Health and the Hamilton County Health Department. The FIMR conducts at-home interviews with families who have experienced a loss to gain additional insight into the root causes of preterm birth in our region. This multidisciplinary program brings together healthcare professionals to review and generate recommendations to reduce infant deaths in our region.
Collaboration is the Key to Reducing Premature Births
Prematurity remains the one of the leading causes of infant mortality, with one in eight babies born prematurely. The Perinatal Institute is focused on preventing premature births through an extensive partnership with TriHealth, University of Cincinnati Medical Center, local health departments, the Women and Infant Vitality Network, March of Dimes, Santa Maria, and others. We are developing a grass-roots approach to reduce the burden of premature births in our communities. These community-specific efforts are under way in Butler County, downtown Cincinnati, Fay Apartments and Price Hill. By working together, we hope to ensure that all babies are born at term.
Global maternal and neonatal mortality rates are unacceptably high − in fact, neonatal mortality comprises up to 40 percent of all deaths of children under 5 years of age around the world. The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) are the greatest initiative by members of the United Nations to improve worldwide health and decrease poverty. One of the major goals is to reduce the mortality rate of children under 5 years old by two-thirds before 2015. Without addressing global neonatal mortality, we will not realize this goal.
Physicians from the Division of Neonatology volunteer their time to collaborate, teach and do research with health providers who work around the world. Our physicians have close ties with the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Global Research Network. They also consult with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and RTI International to aid the global community in comparing the potential of maternal and neonatal technologies to save the lives of mothers and babies in low resource settings – specifically homes, communities and first-level clinics.