Influence of Immediate Skin-to-Skin Contact During Cesarean Surgery on Rate of Transfer of Newborns to NICU for Observation

Nurs Womens Health. Feb-Mar 2017;21(1):28-33. doi: 10.1016/j.nwh.2016.12.008.


We conducted an evidence-based practice project to determine if skin-to-skin contact immediately after cesarean birth influenced the rate of transfer of newborns to the NICU for observation. We analyzed data for 5 years (2011 through 2015) and compared the rates for the period before implementation of skin-to-skin contact with rates for the period after. The proportion of newborns transferred to the NICU for observation was significantly different and lower after implementing skin-to-skin contact immediately after cesarean birth (Pearson's χ2 = 32.004, df = 1, p < .001). These results add to the growing body of literature supporting immediate, uninterrupted skin-to-skin contact for all mother-newborn pairs, regardless of birth mode.

Keywords: NICU observations; cesarean; cesarean surgery; evidence-based practice; skin-to-skin contact.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cesarean Section / nursing
  • Cesarean Section / psychology*
  • Evidence-Based Nursing / methods
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Intensive Care Units, Neonatal / organization & administration*
  • Mother-Child Relations*
  • Pregnancy
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Touch*