Early discharge of low birthweight infants as a hospital policy

J Perinatol. 1990 Dec;10(4):396-8.


All 123 infants with birthweights less than or equal to 2000 g born at a private institution between February 1, 1987, and January 31, 1988, were eligible for early discharge if they met the following criteria: weight about 1800 g, medically stable, feeding well by nipple, satisfactory weight gain, thermostability, and parents and home prepared. Forty-one of 48 (85.4%) infants who satisfied these criteria were discharged at birthweights less than 2100 g. None of the 35 infants for whom follow-up was possible were rehospitalized, had a serious illness, or died as a result of the policy. The policy was universally accepted by the staff. Such a policy has the potential to unite babies and families sooner, promote the mental health of the families, save medical dollars, and make the medical resources of newborn intensive care units available for critically ill infants.

MeSH terms

  • Attitude of Health Personnel
  • Birth Weight
  • Body Temperature Regulation
  • Breast Feeding
  • Consumer Behavior
  • Costs and Cost Analysis
  • Gestational Age
  • Health Policy* / economics
  • Hospital Administration* / economics
  • Humans
  • Infant Care
  • Infant, Low Birth Weight*
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Nurseries, Hospital
  • Parents / education
  • Patient Discharge* / economics
  • Physicians
  • Weight Gain