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The implications of face masks for babies and families during the COVID-19 pandemic: a discussion paper


Green, J and Staff, L and Bromley, P and Jones, L and Petty, J, The implications of face masks for babies and families during the COVID-19 pandemic: a discussion paper, The Journal of Neonatal Nursing, 27, (1) pp. 21-25. ISSN 1355-1841 (2020) [Refereed Article]

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Copyright 2020 Elsevier Ltd.

DOI: doi:10.1016/j.jnn.2020.10.005


COVID-19 has changed the way that newborn babies are cared for within the neonatal setting due to the introduction of social distancing and wearing of face masks to limit the spread of the infection. Potential implications exist related to the normal development of bonding and connections with others. This paper discusses the importance of face to face interactions for early attachment between babies and parents within the context of relevant underpinning developmental theory. Mask wearing can also potentially impact relational communication, requiring us to change our current ways of working. Decreasing face to face interactions and relational communication, along with key recommendations for both parents and health professionals are further highlighted to mitigate the potential negative effects of masks on long-term development related to human connection and attachment.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Covid-19, babies, neonate, facemask
Research Division:Health Sciences
Research Group:Midwifery
Research Field:Psychosocial aspects of childbirth and perinatal mental health
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Specific population health (excl. Indigenous health)
Objective Field:Neonatal and child health
UTAS Author:Green, J (Dr Janet Green)
UTAS Author:Staff, L (Mrs Lynne Staff)
UTAS Author:Bromley, P (Ms Patricia Bromley)
UTAS Author:Jones, L (Dr Linda Jones)
ID Code:142040
Year Published:2020
Deposited By:Nursing
Deposited On:2020-12-09
Last Modified:2021-02-02

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