A Celebration of Life: Neonatal Nursing Care – Care Example

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"A Celebration of Life: Neonatal Nursing Care" is an engrossing example of a paper on care. As a nurse, Hamelin was not only involved in the promotion of breast-feeding but also in caring for premature babies, testing drugs that can increase breast milk production, and peer-counseling. She even came to a point wherein she became one of the activists against companies that manufacture infant-formula milk (Picard, 2000, pp. 23 – 26). As part of the modern neonatal nursing care for newborn babies, nurses are being encouraged to promote the kangaroo care technique. It means that nurses should promote close physical bonding between the mother and the baby.

All these are possible through breast-feeding. According to Hamelin, the benefits associated with breastfeeding is essential towards the survival of premature babies who are confined in NICU (Picard, 2000, p.   23). The main purpose of this study is to gather a nursing journal to determine whether or not the nursing research agrees or disagrees with the importance of promoting breastfeeding. After examining the scope of a journal,   this study will describe the reasons for selecting the theme and how it is related to the professional responsibilities of the nurses.

Using ethical nursing standards, this study will support why Hamelin’ s nursing care strategy is ethically accepted in the nursing profession. Examining the Scope of the Journal The selected journal conducted a systematic review not only with regards to the health consequences of milk formula feeding but also the importance of breast-feeding (Renfrew et al. , 2009). Assuming that the newborn babies were fed with milk formula, Renfrew et al. (2009) mentioned that the newborn babies will be at risk of infection.

Aside from delaying the transition from parenteral to enteral nutrition, low birth-weight babies who were fed with milk formula also suffer from the risks of necrotizing enterocolitis and reduced neuro-developmental attainment. After analyzing the arguments made by Renfrew et al. (2009), it is clear that the selected journal strongly agrees with nursing principles and research findings that were tackled by Picard (2000). For example, Picard (2000, p. 24) mentioned that several research studies found out that most of the premature babies were deprived of physical contact with their mothers causing them to become victims of child abuse while they were growing up as mature individuals.

Despite the long list of health consequences associated with feeding the babies with milk formula,   Renfrew et al. (2009, p. 166) also acknowledged the fact that there are some babies who were continuously fed with formula milk. Another example can be noted when Picard (2000, p. 24) discussed the importance of promoting the kangaroo method wherein newborn babies are allowed to cuddle their mother with skin-to-skin contact. In line with this, Renfrew et al. (2009, p. 168) explained that allowing premature babies to have skin-to-skin contact will enhance the relationship between the infant and the mother.

Aside from promoting family involvement in the care for babies, the use of the kangaroo method will also help ease the mothers’ fear, grief, and shock after giving birth to their newborn baby (Renfrew et al. , 2009, p. 166). The rationale for Selecting the Theme Despite the benefits of breastfeeding, a lot of mothers are still using formula milk to feed their newborn babies. In general, breastfeeding can be defined as “ direct feeding from the breast” whereas kangaroo skin-to-skin contact is defined as the process wherein the infant is held closely in between the mothers’ breasts (Renfrew et al. , 2009, pp.

167 – 169). By selecting the theme “ breastfeeding” , the student nurse will not only be able to gain a deeper knowledge with regards to the proper way of promoting breastfeeding but also gain a better understanding of why neonatal nurses should encourage the mothers to maintain close skin-to-skin contact with the newborn babies. Reasons why Hamelin’ s Nursing Care Strategy is Ethical To enable the patients to overcome their health problems, the CNO’ s ethical standards require each nurse to establish a therapeutic relationship with their patients (College of Nurses of Ontario, 2009b, p.

11). This can be done by extending “ supportive, preventive, therapeutic and palliative” care not only to their patients but also to their patients’ family members (College of Nurses of Ontario, 2009a, p. 3). Aside from being fair to all, nurses are also expected to respect the patients’ life, privacy, and confidentiality (College of Nurses of Ontario, 2009a, p. 4). Hamelin’ s nursing care strategy is ethically accepted based on the CNO nursing ethical standard.

As part of extending therapeutic care to newborn babies, nurses are expected to do only good actions that can contribute a positive impact on the patients’ overall health and well-being. This partly explains why Hamelin is active in promoting the practice of breastfeeding. Implementing breastfeeding policy in all hospitals is a form of therapeutic intervention between the mother and child. As common knowledge, there is a strong unexplainable bond between the mother and child. For this reason, allowing the mothers to cuddle their babies for a certain period of time will lessen the mothers’ agony why their newborn babies are still confined inside the NICU.

Likewise, promoting the kangaroo method will also make newborn babies feel safe and better. Justice is all about being fair to all (Polit & Beck, 2004, p. 159). By promoting breastfeeding, the nurses can indirectly make the newborn babies receive a positive feeling about their health recovery. It will also make mothers feel relax and happy. Within this context, the continuous promotion of breastfeeding will make nurses able to give justice and fair treatment to both the mothers and newborn babies. Conclusion Keeping the newborn babies away from the mothers is more than enough to make them feel high levels of anxiety, fear, and distress.

Likewise, segregating the mothers from newborn babies can make the babies feel less safe.   Breastmilk contains antibodies that are not present in formula milk. For this reason, breastfeeding will make the babies able to fight infections during the first six (6) months of their lives. Because of the health, emotional, and psychological consequences of using formula milk, the theme “ breastfeeding” was selected in this study.


College of Nurses of Ontario. (2009b). Retrieved November 5, 2012, from Professional Standards, Revised 2002: http://www.cno.org/Global/docs/prac/41006_ProfStds.pdf

College of Nurses of Ontario. (2009). Retrieved November 5, 2012, from Ethics: http://www.cno.org/Global/docs/prac/41034_Ethics.pdf

Nystrom, K., & Axelsson, K. (2002). Mothers’ experience of being separated from their newborns. In Obeidat, H.M., The Parental Experience of Having an Infant in the Newborn Intensive Care Unit". The Journal of Perinatal Education, 18(3), 23–29 Bond, E.A., & Callister, L.C. (eds) ".

Polit, D., & Beck, C. (2004). Nursing Research: Principles and Methods. 7th Edition. PA: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

Picard, A. (2000). A Celebration of Life - Kathy Hamelin In Picard, A. (eds) "Critical Care: Canadian Nurses Speak for Change". Canada: HarperCollins.

Renfrew, M., Dyson, L., McCormick, F., Misso, F., Stenhouse, E., King, S., et al. (2009). Breastfeeding promotion for infants in neonatal units: a systematic review. Child: Care Health and Development, 36(2): 165-178.

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