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Childs Nerv Syst ; 38(9): 1727-1734, 2022 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1888856


PURPOSE: To evaluate change in the severity of hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) and associated morbidities between pre- and during COVID-19 pandemic periods in Canada. METHODS: We conducted a retrospective cohort study extracting the data from level-3 NICUs participating in Canadian Neonatal Network (CNN). The primary outcome was a composite of death in the first week after birth and/or stage 3 HIE (Sarnat and Sarnat). Secondary outcomes included rate and severity of HIE among admitted neonates, overall mortality, brain injury on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), neonates requiring resuscitation, organ dysfunction, and therapeutic hypothermia (TH) usage. We included 1591 neonates with gestational age ≥ 36 weeks with HIE during the specified periods: pandemic cohort from April 1st to December 31st of 2020; pre-pandemic cohort between April 1st and December 31st of 2017, 2018, and 2019. We calculated the odds ratio (OR) and confidence intervals (CI). RESULTS: We observed no significant difference in the primary outcome (15% vs. 16%; OR 1.08; 95%CI 0.78-1.48), mortality in the first week after birth (6% vs. 6%; OR 1.10, 95%CI 0.69-1.75), neonates requiring resuscitation, organ dysfunction, TH usage, or rate of brain injury. In the ad hoc analysis, per 1000 live births, there was an increase in the rate of infants with HIE and TH use. CONCLUSIONS: Severity of HIE, associated morbidities, and mortality were not significantly different during the pandemic lockdown compared to a pre-pandemic period in Canada. Anticipated risks and difficulties in accessing healthcare have not increased the mortality and morbidities in neonates with HIE in Canada.

Brain Injuries , COVID-19 , Hypothermia, Induced , Hypoxia-Ischemia, Brain , Brain Injuries/complications , Canada/epidemiology , Cohort Studies , Communicable Disease Control , Humans , Hypoxia-Ischemia, Brain/epidemiology , Hypoxia-Ischemia, Brain/pathology , Hypoxia-Ischemia, Brain/therapy , Infant , Infant, Newborn , Multiple Organ Failure/complications , Multiple Organ Failure/therapy , Pandemics , Retrospective Studies
Pediatr Neonatol ; 63(1): 5-12, 2022 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1336838


Although the Covid-19 pandemic has not had a direct impact on neonates so far, it has raised concerns about resource distribution and showed that planning is required before the next crisis or pandemic. Resource allocation must consider unique Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) attributes, including physical space and equipment that may not be transferable to older populations, unique skills of NICU staff, inherent uncertainty in prognosis both antenatally and postnatally, possible biases against neonates, and the future pandemic disease's possible impact on neonates. We identified the need for a validated Neonatal Severity of Illness Prognostic Score to guide triage decisions. Based on this score, triage decisions are the responsibility of an informed triage team not involved in direct patient care. Support for the distress experienced by parents and staff is needed. This paper presents essential considerations in developing a practical framework for resources and triage in the NICU before, during and after a pandemic.

COVID-19 , Pandemics , Humans , Infant, Newborn , Intensive Care Units, Neonatal , SARS-CoV-2 , Triage