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World Prematurity Day

HPA Magazine 11


World Prematurity Day was once again celebrated by us, on the 17th of November. This year the Neonatology Team of the Gambelas Hospital was very bold and set up an actual Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at the MAR Shopping Center in Loulé. Everything was there, incubator, ventilator, vital signs monitor, phototherapy device, serum support and infusion pumps. There was nothing missing so that everyone could really see firsthand how everything works in a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. 

Of course, interaction was great both with adults and children, and it was possible to achieve the main purpose: showing people the necessary care that must be given to a newborn baby when it is born prematurely. It was explain that the neonatal intensive care unit and its incubators are the first friendly lap for babies born before time. The reason for this was to allay the fear and insecurity that parents experience in these circumstances; “parents are afraid of the size and appearance of their premature baby and are insecure as to the baby’s clinical evolution, they are afraid of not bonding with their baby.  All these aspects need to be discussed and explained to gain parents trust and confidence”, says Dr Luís Gonçalves, Paediatrician and Head of the Paediatrics and Neonatology Departments of the Hospital Particular in Gambelas.
“The well-being of our babies deserves our full concern and dedication, but we must also understand and take special care of the parents, as we know that they must feel helpless and frightened. From the very beginning we explain and demystified their fears and stimulate their involvement”, reinforces Nurse Patricia Inocentes, the Nurse responsible for this department.

At the end of the day the team - four doctors, six nurses and one public relations officer – were visibly pleased with the day’s result. 
Parallel to this activity, other events and participations were also promised.
Dr Adriana Guerreiro, President of the Association "Nascer Prematuro" (www.nascer-prematuro.pt) visited our stand, as did parents and babies who had been hospitalised in our Neonatology Unit and had the opportunity to interact with us. Fears of prematurity were demystified and babies were offered a gift as a reminder of their ordeal. 
The Neonatology Team were also invited to participate in the Solidarity Gala of the Association, which will take place at the Lethes Theatre in Faro.
Finally, our premature babies were once again chosen to be part of the International Federation of Prematurity poster (nidcap.org) - in this case, the twins Luciana and Luísa, prematurely born at 30 weeks and 6 days, were chosen. 
Little ones? Only in size and weight, because the love they generate is enormous.