MONDAY, May 22, 2023 (HealthDay News) -- In a policy statement published online May 22 in Pediatrics, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has established national standards for specific levels of neonatal care.
Noting that a national neonatal verification program is vital to provision of high-quality and equitable care, Ann R. Stark, M.D., from the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, and colleagues developed "Standards for Levels of Neonatal Care: II, III, and IV," which are based on existing AAP policy, evidence-based literature, standards of professional practice, published data, and expert opinion when no data were available.
The authors note that the standards are identified as minimum requirements for each level of neonatal care, and facilities are encouraged to go beyond the minimum. The standards delineate the components of care expected at each level of neonatal care. However, compliance with the standards will not guarantee compliance with applicable state law or other requirements. Furthermore, the standards are not an educational resource related to treatment decisions or standard of patient care; rather, they set forth the minimum components to be included in any neonatal program that wants to be recognized as providing a specific level of care.
"The AAP values equity, diversity, and inclusivity and recognizes that family-centered care is essential for best outcomes and encourages facilities to amplify their focus on family members and staff to elevate the quality of neonatal care and improve the health outcomes of the nation's most vulnerable population," the authors write.