Surrey Memorial Hospital giving 'kangaroo wraps' to parents of premature babies
Kristen Switzer is seen with her son, Cameron, in this image from May 2019. (Peter Bremner)
Surrey Memorial Hospital and 13 other neonatal intensive care units around the British Columbia have started giving “kangaroo wraps” to new parents.
A stretchy fabric designed to hold a newborn very close, the wraps make it easier for parents to hold their baby for longer periods of time.
“It has made a very difficult situation easier,” says Kristen Switzer, whose son, Cameron, was born prematurely at 26 weeks. “With the wrap, it allows me to have him securely against my chest. I can fully relax if I need to. I can sleep if I feel like I’m dozing off. It helps keep him in the same position and secure to my chest.”
“Babies develop better when they’re skin-to-skin with a parent,” says Fraser Health lactation consultant Deb McLaren. “Their temperature is more stable, their heart rates, their breathing, their brain development – everything is more positive when they’re being held skin-to-skin.”
Since April, 40 wraps have been given to new parents at Surrey Memorial.