Published: 2021-11-23

Impact of postnatal counseling on care of newborn

Vantaku Venkata Vijayalakshmi, K. Jhansi Padma, M. Madan Mohan, D. Manikyamba, A. Krishna Prasad


Background: Newborn care is an integral aspect of child health care practices. Globally 2.4 million children died in the neonatal period in 2019. Currently in India around 7.47 lakh neonates die annually. Advocating and adopting proper postnatal care of newborn in aspects of breastfeeding, immunization, warmth care, cord care, eye care etc will help in reducing neonatal morbidity and mortality.

Methods: This was an hospital based cross sectional study of 100 postnatal mothers of babies admitted in NICU, in a tertiary care hospital. The knowledge of the mothers on various aspects of postnatal care was assessed by a pretest, followed by counseling and reassessment with a post test.

Results: The study found that postnatal mothers had better awareness regarding breastfeeding, warmth care, cord care and oil massage. Poor knowledge was seen regarding eye care, immunization, recognition of danger signs and maternal nutrition and supplementation. Health care workers focused more on breastfeeding and warmth care practices than other aspects of postnatal care during antenatal counseling which could be a reason for this. A wide gap exists between contact with health workers and antenatal counseling. Knowledge gaps of the mothers improved significantly after counseling irrespective of their parity, education and location as seen by the increase in mean scores.

Conclusions: Neonatal morbidity and mortality due to avoidable causes like hypoglycemia, hypothermia, sepsis can be achieved by practicing appropriate post-natal care practices. WHO recommendations on these practices should be widely propagated through frequent antenatal and post-natal counseling by health care workers.


Neonatal mortality, Antenatal, Postnatal, Counseling, Newborn care practices

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