What is Kangaroo Care?
Kangaroo Care (KC) is a way of holding a preterm or full term infant so that there is Skin-to-Skin Contact (SSC) between the infant and the person holding her: mom, dad, grandparents, adoptive parents, or any care giver. The baby, wearing only a diaper, is held bare chest to bare chest with a caregiver. Kangaroo Care is developmental care and is important for every baby regardless of how they will be fed (breastfed or formula fed). We developed MyRoo Tube, an easy-to-use shirt for Skin-to-Skin Contact, so caregivers can administer SSC properly.
There are many health benefits for infants held in Kangaroo Care, especially for preterm babies. And it is extremely beneficial for the baby directly after birth. It is recommended that KC begin immediately after delivery for at least 1 hour and through the first feeding.
Originally developed in 1978, Kangaroo Care has spread worldwide and is considered best practice for hospitals in the United States. More and more health care professionals are educating and training patients in how to properly practice Kangaroo Care. This is particularly evident in NICU’s (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit), as the vast majority now implement SSC.
For detailed information about Kangaroo Care, visit the USIKC website.
Source: MCN The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing, 2002