Abstract: Premature Infant Positioning Tool

Approximately 10% of infants in 2019 were born prematurely. These infants were sent to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) immediately after birth as a result of not fully developing. Many of these preterm infants suffer from hypotonia due to not fully developing their musculoskeletal system. A consequence of infants suffering from hypotonia is that they are not able to support themselves, including positioning their bodies. To treat infants with hypotonia, NICU nurses perform developmental positioning on them. However, NICU nurses are not training with an accurate infant model before performing developmental positioning on premature infants. With a uniform and practical model of a premature infant, nurses will become more knowledgeable about developmental positioning before using the treatment in person. The model will help by being used as on-hand training paired with the Infant Positioning Assessment Tool (IPAT). Our goal for the Infant Positioning Tool is to further improve the training of NICU nurses that treat preterm infants with developmental positioning. We anticipate that the product will also promote this treatment to be more universally used.