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Early Postnatal Discharge for Infants: A Meta-analysis

Jones, E., Taylor, B., MacArthur, C., Bradshaw, S., Hope, Lucy and Cummins, C. (2020) Early Postnatal Discharge for Infants: A Meta-analysis. Pediatrics, 146 (3). e20193365. ISSN 1098-4275

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Abstract

CONTEXT: Postnatal length of hospital stay has reduced internationally but evidence-based abstract
policies to support earlier discharge are lacking.
OBJECTIVE: To determine the effects of early postnatal discharge on infant outcomes.
DATA SOURCES: CENTRAL (Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials), Medline, Embase,
Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature , and SCI (Science Citation Index)
were searched through to January 15, 2018.
STUDY SELECTION: Studies reporting infant outcomes with early postnatal discharge versus
standard discharge were included if they met Effective Practice and Organisation of Care study
design criteria.
DATA EXTRACTION: Two authors independently assessed eligibility and extracted data, resolving
disagreements by consensus. Data from interrupted time series (ITS) studies were extracted
and reanalyzed in meta-analyses. Meta-analyses of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) used
random effects models.
RESULTS: Of 9298 studies, 15 met the inclusion criteria. RCT meta-analyses revealed that infants
discharged ,48 hours after vaginal birth and ,96 hours after cesarean birth were more likely
to be readmitted to the hospital within 28 days compared to standard discharge (risk ratio:
1.70; 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.34 to 2.15). ITS meta-analyses revealed a reduction in the
proportion of infants readmitted within 28 days after minimum postnatal stay policies and
legislation were introduced (change in slope: 20.62; 95% CI 21.83 to 0.60), with increasing
impact in the first and second years (effect estimate: 24.27 [95% CI 27.91 to 20.63] and
26.23 [95% CI 210.15 to 22.32]).
LIMITATIONS: Withdrawals and crossover limited the value of RCTs in this context but not ITS
evidence.
CONCLUSIONS: Infants discharged early after birth were more likely to be admitted within 28 days.
The introduction of postnatal minimum length of stay policies was associated with a longterm reduction in neonatal hospital readmission rates.

Item Type: Article
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Uncontrolled Discrete Keywords: early, postnatal discharge, infants, meta-analysis
Subjects: R Medicine > RG Gynecology and obstetrics
R Medicine > RJ Pediatrics
R Medicine > RT Nursing
Divisions: College of Health, Life and Environmental Sciences > School of Nursing and Midwifery
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Lucy Hope
Date Deposited: 25 Aug 2020 10:20
Last Modified: 17 Sep 2020 13:10
URI: https://eprints.worc.ac.uk/id/eprint/9593

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