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Maternal non-compliance in a well-baby nursery: family characteristics and other reasons

Erez Nadir, Vered Nir, Sylvia Foldi, Amit Hochberg, Michael Feldman


Objective: Neonatal recommendations include medical follow-up, metabolic screening, vitamin K, eye drops/ointment and vaccinations. Most but not all parents follow these recommendations. This study aimed to characterize the non-adherent mothers in order to understand the reasons behind that non-adherence.

Study design: All mothers who refused any routine treatment of their infant or who asked for early discharge of their infant were included. They completed a questionnaire on socio-economic items, previous births and those children’s health status, current pregnancy and delivery and their beliefs.

Results: Three non-adherent subgroups emerged according to the responses: Muslim mothers requesting early discharge to care for children at home, Jewish mothers requesting early discharge because they disliked the hospital environment, Sabbath/holiday and children at home and Jewish mothers who rejected guidelines because they believed the treatments were unnecessary or possibly harmful to their infants.

Conclusion: Socio-economic factors could influence maternal adherence to care guidelines in a well-baby nursery. Several interventions to enhance maternal adherence to medical recommendations are proposed in order to increase the child and family centeredness of clinical and social care.


Compliance, Well baby nursery, Early discharge, Refusal to treat, Ethnicity, Socio-economic factors

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