Implementing Skin-To-Skin Contact at Birth Using the Iowa Model

Applying Evidence to Practice


  • Objectives

    Upon completion of this activity, the learner will be able to:

    1. List the benefits to mothers and newborns of early skin-to-skin contact.
    2. Describe the steps for implementing an evidence-based practice change using the Iowa Model of Evidence-Based Practice to Promote Quality Care.
    3. Describe the challenges and outcomes observed in this facility after the implementation of early skin-to-skin contact.
  • The authors and planners of this activity report no confl icts of interest or relevant financial relationships. There is no discussion of off -label drug or device use in this article. No commercial support was received for this learning activity.

  • Continuing Nursing Education (CNE) Credit

    A total of 1 contact hour may be earned as CNE credit for reading “Implementing Skin-To-Skin Contact at Birth Using the Iowa Model: Applying Evidence to Practice,” and for completing an online post-test and participant feedback form.

    To take the test and complete the participant feedback form, please visit Certificates of completion will be issued on receipt of the completed participant feedback form and processing fees.

    Association of Women's Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses is accredited as a provider of continuing nursing education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation.

    Accredited status does not imply endorsement by AWHONN or ANCC of any commercial products displayed or discussed in conjunction with an educational activity.

    AWHONN is approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing, provider #CEP580.

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Prolonged skin-to-skin contact (SSC) between mothers and newborns in the hour after birth is associated with physiologic and psychological benefits for both mothers and infants, yet this is not a standard practice at all birthing facilities. The purpose of the project described in this article was to implement SSC immediately aft er birth for healthy term newborns as a routine, evidence-based practice in a labor and delivery unit at a Midwestern U.S. academic medical center. When incorporated into routine newborn care, SSC promotes key maternal-infant health outcomes of importance to quality nursing care.