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J Pediatr Nurs. 1998 Oct;13(5):279-89.

Environmental impact of the NICU on developmental outcomes.

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  • 1Department of Family and Child Nursing, University of Washington School of Nursing, Seattle 98195, USA.


The neonate, especially the premature one, is both dependent on and vulnerable to the intensive care environment to support physiologic and neurobehavioral organization. Concerns about this environment have led to suggestions that it may be a major contributing factor in the persistent incidence of behavioral and learning problems among preterm infants. By modifying the neonatal intensive care environment to provide a more developmentally supportive milieu, we can better meet the infant's physiologic and neurobehavioral needs, support the infant's emerging organization, and foster growth and development.

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