21/01/2019 | Announcements

Testing babies for jaundice in the community

New parents will no longer need to take their babies to hospital for a simple test which can now be done at home or in the community.

ESNEFT’s community midwifery teams in east Suffolk have been provided with new bilirubinometers which test for jaundice in newborn babies. This means colleagues can carry out the test during a home visit or in a community setting, so families won’t need to go to hospital to have it done.

With the community midwifery teams caring for families and their newborns in towns across east Suffolk, including Eye, Leiston and Saxmundham, a trip to Ipswich Hospital could involve a 40 to 50-mile round trip for some.


Nicola Heath, lead community midwife, said less than 4% of babies tested have to come into hospital, so being able to do the check during routine visits will save 96% of families a journey to the hospital.

She said: “It’s so quick and simple.”

The introduction of the equipment comes after a successful bid for Transformation funding from Ipswich and East Suffolk CCG (Clinical Commissioning Group).

A bilirubinometer is a device which measures the amount of bilirubin in the blood. The level detected is then used to decide whether any treatment is needed.

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