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in the spotlight

AAP-ACOG Issues Joint Statement:
Oppose Water Immersion During the 2nd Stage of Labor

A joint statement by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology acknowledges growing public interest in immersion in water during labor and delivery.  Their evidence-based review revealed no evidence supporting improved maternal or fetal outcomes associated with immersion during labor and delivery and rare but serious complications of underwater delivery of the infant.  AAP and ACOG experts concluded that, ‘the practice of immersion in the second stage of labor (underwater delivery) should be considered an experimental procedure that only should be performed within the context of an appropriately designed clinical trial with informed consent.’  AAP and ACOG experts further noted that, ‘facilities that plan to offer immersion in the first stage of labor need to establish rigorous protocols for candidate selection, maintenance and cleaning of tubs and immersion pools, infection control procedures, monitoring of mothers and fetuses at appropriate intervals while immersed, and immediately and safely moving women out of the tubs if maternal or fetal concerns develop.’

Read the full statement »

1975 Apgar Awardee:
Clement "Clem" Andrew Smith

The Virginia Apgar Award is the most prestigious honor conferred by the Section on Perinatal Pediatrics.  Since 1975, this award has been bestowed upon an individual whose cumulative career contributions continue to influence the well-being of newborn infants in a powerful way. This third in a series of vignettes on Apgar Awardees highlights the accomplishments of Clement "Clem" Smith. 

Clement (“Clem”) Andrew Smith was born in 1901 in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Growing up as the son of a Professor of English and Vice-President of the University of Michigan sheds light on why he completed a Master’s program in English before obtaining his M.D. degree at the University of Michigan in 1928.  His literary interests and talents would later serve to galvanize the impact of his scientific writings among the generations of neonatal physicians to follow him. He had a particular love of poetry and had a lifelong friendship with the American poet Robert Frost, whom he met during Frost’s tenure as a teaching fellow at the University of Michigan.

More on Dr. Smith »

In the News



Trainee Opportunity

The AAP Section on Perinatal Pediatrics and Vermont Oxford Network invite Trainees in Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine to attend the VT-Oxford Network Annual Meeting and Quality Congress (AMQC) in October.  The Vermont Oxford Network has crafted a visionary program featuring world-class faculty with special fellow-focused events including opportunities to submit abstracts and participate in the Learning Fair poster presentations. This year, the AAP Section on Perinatal Pediatrics will offer five travel scholarships of $1,000 to the Vermont Oxford Network’s 2014 Annual Meeting and Quality Congress.

The Vermont Oxford Network will waive the registration fees for the five travel awardees.  For more information, please see the link below:

Deadline is extended to July 15th, 2014

For more information »

Regional Networks Advance Quality Improvement

Neonatal quality improvement networks are emerging around the country and are moving forward the agenda for better perinatal health.  In this first of a series on such networks, we describe the work of the Florida Perinatal Quality Collaborative (FPQC).

The FPQC was established in 2010 at the University of South Florida (USF) with seed funding from the March of Dimes.  The FPQC, a partnership among state organizations, perinatal professionals, hospitals and payers, aims to improve maternal and infant health outcomes in Florida through evidence-based quality improvement (QI) projects. 

Learn more about the FPQC »

CoPS Shares Information About Training & Certification

The Council of Pediatric Subspecialties (CoPS), in which the AAP Section on Perinatal Pediatrics participates, works closely with the American Board of Pediatrics and other significant pediatric organizations to address issues common across pediatric subspecialties.   We offer a recent CoPS update on subspecialty competencies, entrustable professional activities (EPAs), fellowship training and other contemporary issues.

Learn more »

New AHRQ Toolkit Designed to Improve
Safety of Fragile Newborns

A new toolkit is available to help improve the safety of infants born preterm or with complex congenital conditions as they transition from the neonatal intensive care unit to their home. Funded by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, the toolkit features information on how to create a Health Coach Program, where the “Health Coach” serves as a teacher and facilitator who encourages open communication with the parents/caregivers to identify their needs and concerns and facilitates follow-up care for the infant by primary care providers. As an online product, the Health Coach Program can customize a broad range of information for each family based on their needs and concerns. Included are approximately 30 fact sheets, directed to either the clinician or the infant’s family, on topics that range from medications to breastfeeding to insurance coverage tips.

See more here »

Sleeping Boy CHAPTER 9: Quality Improvement Opportunities in Postpartum Care

Chapter 9 is about the experiences that a woman has immediately after giving birth and for the first 6 weeks after birth (postpartum care) could seriously affect her health, the health of her child, her perception of childbirth and even her attachment to her newborn. Postpartum care has been shown to improve perinatal health outcomes. And yet, there are aspects of postpartum care that could improve these outcomes even further: immediate and sustained breastfeeding; Family-Centered Maternity Care, in which the mother and infant are not separated at all throughout the hospital stay and the new family’s needs are paramount; teaching new mothers and fathers about smoking cessation in order to improve their health and that of their new infants and children at home; universal screening for postpartum depression; and screening for postpartum post-traumatic stress disorder.

Ch 9: Quality Improvement Opportunities in Postpartum Care »

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