Hyderabad: GE Healthcare, the $18 billion healthcare business of General Electric Company, on Friday introduced a new range of products — Lullaby Warmer Prime and Lullaby Resus Plus — for the survival and growth of neonates in the primary care settings.
Over the last decade there have been many advances in neonatal care, yet birth asphyxia and hypothermia remain leading causes of infant death and disabilities like blindness worldwide. There is a huge need to improve access to innovative solutions offering clinical performance, ease of use and affordability, according to a statement by GE Healthcare.
Rita M Barksdale, global general manager, maternal infant care, GE Healthcare, said, “Pre-term births, neonatal hypothermia, birth asphyxia, lack of oxygen circulation and jaundice are some of the largest causes for neonatal morbidity and mortality. These deaths and disabilities formed in the process of survival are preventable with access to quality critical care solutions like Warmers, Resuscitation, CPAP (breathing support for under-developed infant lungs) and phototherapy devices. While Lullaby Warmer and Lullaby Resus suite of solutions are designed in India for India, they will also benefit the entire world.”
According to GE Healthcare, “The new Lullaby Warmer Prime is an easy to use infant warmer that makes safe and reliable thermoregulation accessible for primary care settings even in remote and rural areas. By delivering uniform thermoregulation and consistently maintaining prescribed temperatures, the Lullaby Warmer Prime helps caregivers save precious young lives. The single-function buttons and easy-to-follow graphic instructions make operation simple, even when skilled caregivers are unavailable. The Lullaby Warmer Prime is designed to operate in tough conditions and is equipped with a re-usable probe made with Kevlar, the same material used in bullet-proof vests for reliability. The system can work without a voltage stabilizer and has been designed to withstand heavy voltage fluctuations prevalent in rural areas of India and operates on 50 per cent lesser electricity than comparable systems.”
“The first minute after birth is the most critical period for an infant and hospitals need to be prepared for exigencies like asphyxia caused due to airway blockage. The Lullaby Resus Prime and Lullaby Resus Plus are neonatal resuscitation devices that deliver simple operation with flexible patient circuits, bag-and-mask and T-piece configurations respectively, and are intuitive to operate to accommodate virtually any level of skill. These integrated, compact systems put lifesaving capabilities right at the bedside. Lullaby Resus Prime allows the control of suction pressures within Neonatal Resuscitation Programme (NRP) guidelines,” according to GE.
“GE Healthcare’s Lullaby suite of infant care solutions are developed in India from ground up with the help and inputs from primary care and other healthcare professionals across India. The low resource settings need equipment that are easy to use, do not breakdown frequently and can be used with minimal training. The equipment also needs to be rugged to handle India’s conditions of voltage, temperature fluctuations, heat and dust. These solutions are designed to be used in low resource settings and by frontline caregivers and can dramatically improve access to quality care,” said the company.
While the world has made unprecedented progress in tackling maternal and child mortality, the birthing process continues to be the riskiest day for every newborn. Of the 139 million children born every year in the world, 4 million die in the first month, 3 million in the first week and 1 million are born to die on the same day. India is one of the largest contributors with 309,000 newborn deaths in the first 24 hours and 876,000 in the first month.
“Helping newborns survive their first day – and their first week – of life represents the greatest challenge in reducing child mortality and meeting the ambitious Millennium Development Goal (MDG4). India contributes to 23 per cent of child mortality and 19 per cent of maternal mortality on the planet. India should invest in health infrastructure, bring in affordable technologies and develop skilled healthcare professionals to achieve MDGs,” said Dr M Padmanabh Reddy, CEO, NICE Foundation, Hyderabad.
At least 50 per cent of global births occur in low resource or under-served settings where access to quality infant care remains limited. Nearly 25 per cent of the world’s births occur in India and 70 per cent of them are in under-served settings increasing the risk of mother and child survival. Over 50 per cent of births in India are not attended by skilled people. In developing nations, where at least 20 million low-birth-weight babies are born every year, warmers, resuscitation devices, and incubators are critical lifesaving devices. The Lullaby suite of infant care solutions has the potential to help caregivers improve access to quality infant care in developing countries where nearly 90 per cent of the world’s births occur.
“The primary barrier to using potentially lifesaving equipment is access to appropriate technology especially in low resource settings. We have removed that barrier by designing solutions from the ground up to ensure they impact the quality of care everywhere, are cost-effective and are usable by frontline health workers,” said Ashutosh Banerjee, director of life care solutions, GE Healthcare South Asia.