This guidance is for NSW neonatal services and is focussed on the care of newborn babies born to women with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 in the acute healthcare setting. The criteria for
suspected or confirmed cases of COVID-19 is clearly defined by NSW Health.
This guideline is based on a combination of available evidence to date on COVID-19. The importance of uncertainty is acknowledged, and this guideline will be subject to change over the course of the pandemic as new evidence emerges. The guideline focuses on specific considerations for neonatal services relevant to the COVID-19 environment and does not provide detail on specific clinical procedures. For Information on infection prevention and control practices see the Clinical Excellence Commission (CEC) Infection Prevention and Control webpage.
This guideline should be used in conjunction with the following NSW Health documents:
NSW Health endorses the use of the Queensland Clinical Guidelines 'Perinatal care of suspected or confirmed COVID19 pregnant women'; Section 2 'Maternity care during COVID-19 pandemic' and Section 4 'In-hospital maternity care for suspected or confirmed COVID-19 cases'.
Table 1 General Principles
Newborn babies of women NOT suspected nor confirmed to have COVID-19, should receive routine care
For current case definition and testing criteria for COVID-19, see the NSW Ministry of Health website.
Table 2. Risk Assessment and Care Planning
It is recommended that the following specialities convene to regularly review the plan for birth, postnatal care and discharge of an admitted woman with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 and her baby/babies:
Table 3. Birth
Table 4. Well term newborn baby
Table 5. Newborn baby who requires admission to the neonatal unit (from the birth environment or postnatal ward)
1. Proven neonatal COVID-19.
2. Suspected neonatal COVID-19 (i.e. tests pending in woman and/or neonate)
3. No risk or suspicion of COVID-19
If necessary 1 and 2 could be combined with social distance, with a separate area for 3.
Table 7. Testing
Discharge planning for newborn infants born to women with suspected or confirmed COVID-19