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Neonatal Intensive Care:  At What Price?

ALAN D. BEDRICK, MD
Am J Dis Child. 1989;143(4):451-452. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1989.02150160077014.
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The March 24/31, 1989, issue of The Journal of the American Medical Association is dedicated to timely and important topics relating to newborn medicine. These include articles dealing with perinatal infections1-3 and prenatal dilemmas.4,5 The contents of this issue of JAMA are important and relevant to health care professionals who render care to pregnant women and their children.

Three articles in particular are of great significance to pediatricians caring for infants who may have spent many weeks or months in a modern neonatal intensive care unit. Allen et al6 comment on demographic characteristics associated with neonatal intensive care after-discharge mortality in Georgia. They found that infants who died after discharge had a median duration of neonatal intensive care unit hospitalization of 20 days (only twice as long as the "average" length of stay in most neonatal intensive care units) and a median birthweight of 1983 g. These

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