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Current status of neonatal intensive care in India
  1. N Karthik Nagesh,
  2. Abdul Razak
  1. Department of Neonatology, Manipal Hospital, Bangalore, India
  1. Correspondence to Professor N Karthik Nagesh, Chairman of Neonatology and Manipal Advanced Children's Centre, Manipal Hospital, Bangalore Karnataka, India; karthik.nagesh{at}manipalhospitals.com, drkarthiknagesh{at}gmail.com

Abstract

Globally, newborn health is now considered as high-level national priority. The current neonatal and infant mortality rate in India is 29 per 1000 live births and 42 per 1000 live births, respectively. The last decade has seen a tremendous growth of neonatal intensive care in India. The proliferation of neonatal intensive care units, as also the infusion of newer technologies with availability of well-trained medical and nursing manpower, has led to good survival and intact outcomes. There is good care available for neonates whose parents can afford the high-end healthcare, but unfortunately, there is a deep divide and the poor rural population is still underserved with lack of even basic newborn care in few areas! There is increasing disparity where the ‘well to do’ and the ‘increasingly affordable middle class’ is able to get the most advanced care for their sick neonates. The underserved urban poor and those in rural areas still contribute to the overall high neonatal morbidity and mortality in India. The recent government initiative, the India Newborn Action Plan, is the step in the right direction to bridge this gap. A strong public–private partnership and prioritisation is needed to achieve this goal. This review highlights the current situation of neonatal intensive care in India with a suggested plan for the way forward to achieve better neonatal care.

  • Neonatology
  • Intensive Care
  • India

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