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Thursday December 3rd, 2020 12:55AM

Northeast Georgia Medical Center joins registry for women and babies with COVID-19

By Lauren Hunter Multimedia Journalist

The Women and Children’s Services at Northeast Georgia Medical Center in Gainesville is now part of a national registry that tracks COVID-19 cases in mothers and infants.

The registry supplies data on the relationship between new mothers who test positive for virus and their infants. Staff with the Women and Children’s Services at NGMC can use this data to learn more about how the virus effects both mother and data, improve counseling for mothers with COVID-19 and learn more about how to prevent infants from contracting the virus.

Aubrey Williams, Neonatal Intensive Care Unit Educator at NGMC and Bridgette Schulman, Clinical Practice Specialist with NGMC’s Women and Children’s Services have been working together to register patients into the registry and analyze data.

Both Williams and Schulman said one of the greatest benefits of the registry is the knowledge that comes from being a part of it.

“It helps us take something that we’re experiencing, in this case the COVID-19 virus pandemic…we observe that’s happening [in our patients] and try to gain lessons learned from them,” said Schulman.

Having access to the registry will also help NGMC staff make several difficult decisions, including how often mother and baby need to be separated and if a new mother can breastfeed.

Williams explained that she and Schulman work together to identify COVID-19 positive mothers through the hospital’s electronic system and add them to the registry as needed.

“The registry that we’re a part of provides us the data points that we need to collect,” said Williams. “Then Bridgette and I work collectively together to look through each patient’s chart to look at all the data points and then I input it into the registry.”

The registry is an initiative of the American Academy of Pediatrics’ Section on Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine that just became available in March. Currently 176 facilities, or hospitals, are participating in 39 states and the District of Columbia.

Williams said another benefit of being a part of this national registry helps NGMC staff see more trends and data from a national standpoint, as well.

“It’s a really neat aspect to think of how Northeast Georgia is able to be a part of this national registry and look and see what other hospitals are doing and what are their outcomes,” said Williams. “It’s really exciting to see how we can better provide care for our patients.”

On the flip side, Schulman said she is excited for NGMC to have the opportunity to provide information to other hospitals on what they are seeing.

“We can contribute what we’re learning here at NGMC and gain the knowledge of what’s happening at other organizations,” said Schulman.

Northeast Georgia Medical Center just joined the registry around April, and Williams and Schulman said they are already learning about how the virus effects their patients.

“While we are having some positive moms and we have experienced positive babies overall our outcomes are still very good,” said Schulman. “We haven’t had a lot of very serious ill moms or babies, so we are happy to see people going 凯发k8地址home at pretty regular times.”

Williams and Schulman both said that the registry will further help with their treatment of mothers and newborns.

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