Newborn Health: Federal Action Needed to Address Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome

Newborn Health: Federal Action Needed to Address Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome.
GAO Report to Congressional Addressees; GAO-18-32
United States Government Accountability Office.
2017

https://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-18-32
https://www.gao.gov/assets/690/687580.pdf

The rising opioid epidemic has contributed to an increase in the number of babies born with neonatal abstinence syndrome—a withdrawal condition with symptoms including excessive crying and difficulty breathing.

The Department of Health and Human Services identified key recommendations to help guide its efforts to prevent and treat this syndrome—such as providing medical education to healthcare providers on how to treat these infants. However, we found that it is unclear how the department will implement these recommendations, if at all.

It was recommended that HHS develop a plan to implement these recommendations.

Some infants may receive treatment in a neonatal withdrawal center equipped with a rocking chair to encourage mothers to visit and provide care as well.

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