Induced-labor births in the U.S. trending downward | New tool predicts neonatal sepsis in intensive care units | Study tracks hospitalization risk for preterm infants without RSV prophylaxis
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July 7, 2014
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Induced-labor births in the U.S. trending downward
Between 2006 and 2012, rates of labor induction at 35 to 38 weeks of gestation dropped, with the biggest decline among births at 37 to 38 weeks, the CDC said. The report also found racial and geographic differences in the number of induced-labor births, with white mothers and Utah recording the largest declines in rates. HealthDay News (6/18)
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Patient Safety & Clinical Update
New tool predicts neonatal sepsis in intensive care units
Kaiser Permanente's Division of Research says that neonatal intensive care units can use an online tool to calculate the risk of sepsis developing in newborns. The interactive calculator produces the probability of infection based on risk factors including gestational age, highest maternal antepartum temperature, rupture of membranes and other pregnancy-related data. Healthcare Informatics online (6/10)
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Study tracks hospitalization risk for preterm infants without RSV prophylaxis
Researchers followed more than 1,600 preterm babies in the U.S. and found that the risk of being hospitalized for respiratory syncytial virus infection tripled among those who did not receive RSV prophylaxis compared with the general population of infants. The findings were published in the Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal. Healio (free registration)/Infectious Diseases in Children (6/11)
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Study ties heavier babies to pre-pregnancy obesity
Pre-pregnancy obesity was associated with a higher birth weight and fat mass in newborns, according to a study published in the journal Acta Paediatrica. Compared with babies of normal-weight mothers, infants born to obese mothers were about 0.4 pounds heavier at birth and had an average of 3.6 ounces more fat mass. (6/18)
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Infants' immune systems make them more prone to infection
Newborns' immune systems produce T cells that respond quickly to infections but are short-lived and fail to create a pool of memory T cells, leaving infants more prone to infection, according to a study in The Journal of Immunology. "Our findings fundamentally change how we look at neonatal susceptibility to infection," researcher Dr. Sing Sing Way said. Medical News Today (6/15)
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PTSD, depression in pregnancy linked to increased premature birth risk
Pregnant women with both post-traumatic stress disorder and depression had a fourfold increased chance of giving birth prematurely than those without either mental condition, according to a study in the journal JAMA Psychiatry. Women with PTSD symptoms but no depression also were at greater risk for premature birth than those without PTSD. (6/11)
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Many older women may get too much calcium from supplements, study finds
A study in the journal Menopause found that some older women who take supplements may be getting too much vitamin D and calcium, which could cause health problems such as kidney stones. In a randomized study of 142 women ages 57 to 90, nearly 9% had excess calcium in their blood while 32% had too much calcium in their urine. Checking blood and urine calcium levels before supplements are started and three months afterward could reduce the risk, researchers said. (6/22)
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Professional Practice
Atlanta-area hospital emphasizes nursing certification
Eastside Medical Center Chief Nursing Officer Stuart Downs said the Atlanta-area hospital has set a goal of increasing the number of its nurses who are certified from 14% to 20% this year. Director of Women's Services Penny Montgomery said becoming certified in inpatient obstetrics and electronic fetal monitoring demonstrated her commitment to staying up-to-date in her specialty. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (free content) (6/21)
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Nurses in highest demand among health care professions
Nurses are more sought after than any other health care professionals, experts say, with data indicating that advanced practice nurses, including nurse midwives and nurse anesthetists, will see significant job growth over the next decade. Jill Schwieters of Cielo Talent Solutions says there will be more jobs for APRNs. HealthLeaders Media (6/16)
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Policy, Ethics & Legal Update
CDC raises awareness of vitamin K injections for newborns
A CDC initiative is focusing on educating parents and health care practitioners about the importance of vitamin K injections for newborns to help reduce the risk of bleeding, which can cause developmental disorders and other medical conditions. The agency also is studying infants who have had bleeding due to vitamin K deficiency. St. Louis Post-Dispatch (6/18)
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Technology & Trends
Flying ICU transports patients in need of critical medical care
Flying ICU, based at McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas, transports medical patients around the region. The company was launched 10 years ago by President Donna Miller. The company uses its three aircraft to fly transplant patients and others in need of critical medical attention. "On our flights, a patient is often going from a hospital ICU to our ICU in the sky," Miller said. "We have the same kind of equipment the hospital uses, but it's all smaller and portable." Las Vegas Review-Journal (6/11)
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