Nearly 1 in 10 newborns in Europe is admitted to a neonatal intensive care unit in the first days of life – around 400,000 admissions every year.

Neonatal units provide a greater chance of survival for newborns with serious illnesses, but they also increase the risk of exposure to bacteria from the hospital environment. These can cause the babies to catch serious infections, which are commonly resistant to many routinely used antibiotics, highlighting the need for best practices to prevent infections and improve the surveillance of resistant bacteria in neonatal intensive care units.

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What is NeoIPC?

NeoIPC is establishing innovative approaches for optimal infection prevention of resistant bacteria in NICUs by integrating research, implementation science and surveillance in a sustainable global platform.

NeoIPC will conduct a cluster randomised hybrid effectiveness-implementation study, NeoDeco, to investigate if optimised kangaroo care, conducted alongside the surveillance of hospital-acquired infections and implementation support activities, can reduce severe neonatal infection, sepsis and resistant bacterial colonisation in high-risk newborns.

Penta is the sponsor of the NeoDeco study, which is set to start in 2024 in 24 European NICUs.

Why is NeoIPC needed?

Identifying and investigating best practices and infection prevention and control (IPC) interventions for dealing with resistant bacterial infections in neonatal intensive care is urgently needed. Currently, the management of resistant bacterial infection in this setting is fragmented, highly variable, poorly integrated and not supported by robust evidence.

What is NeoIPC’s goal?

NeoIPC is aiming to develop and implement an innovative approach towards the evaluation of infection prevention and control interventions, assess the effectiveness of interventions in a randomised controlled study while also working towards the identification of a suitable implementation strategy. NeoIPC will also generate widely relevant and globally transferrable outputs to improve infection prevention and control in neonatal care.

NeoIPC is building a platform for research into IPC interventions in neonatal intensive care. The platform will establish standard IPC assessments for quality improvement and research and make use of innovative research methods to evaluate IPC interventions.

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 965328.