Factors That Influence the Receipt of Well Baby Care in the First 2 Weeks of Life

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To determine the percentage of babies born at a community hospital who received follow-up visits at home or clinic by 2 weeks of age. Also to describe the characteristics of the mothers whose newborns received visits within 2 weeks of birth.


A convenience sample of 335 mothers giving birth at a 430-bed community hospital in St. Paul, MN from September 2003 to September 2004 were surveyed by telephone when their infants were approximately 3- to 4-weeks old.


84% of the infants had a home or clinic visit within 2 weeks of birth. In bivariate analyses, the likelihood of having a visit within 2 weeks was significantly lower for mothers having more children (P = .002), lower maternal education level (P = .002), lower income (P = .02), mothers' lack of knowledge of baby's insurance (P = .02), mothers of nonwhite race (P = .03), and mothers' having no medical insurance (P = .04). The likelihood of a visit was not significantly related to whether English was spoken in the home or marital status. In logistic regression analyses, lower maternal education, and more children were significant predictors of the lack of visits.


Infants whose mothers had little education and had other children were a high-risk group that was less likely to receive care. When discharging newborns belonging to this group, extra effort should be made to ensure that appropriate postdischarge follow-up occurs.

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