Technology Helps Bridge Gap Between Newborns & Moms Sepeated After Birth (NBC33 VIDEO)

By EmmaKoch

April 5, 2013 Updated Apr 5, 2013 at 5:40 PM EDT

LOS ANGELES, Cali. (www.nbc33.com) -- When a mother and her newborn child must be separated after birth, an LA hospital is finding technological ways to bridge the gap using FaceTime.

All a new mother wants to do is stare at her baby for hours, marveling at every tiny movement, but sometimes mom and baby must be separated.

Like when a newborn needs extra medical attention in the neonatal intensive care unit. Then, mom waits...alone.

"Mothers who carry their babies for a length of time - whether they're born prematurely or if they have post-delivery complications - there's that gap of 24-48 hours where they can't see their baby," Nurse Yvonne Kidder informs NBC.

Nurse Kidder saw how that separation caused anxiety in mothers stuck in recovery on one floor of Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, while their babies were being tended to on another.

An idea was born.

"Wouldn't it be great to do face time with our babies and recovering mothers..?"

"There she is!!! She's so comfortable."

In this case, new mom Tana Navarro communicates with her baby over an i-Pad from her recovery room. Nurses are on the other end with Tana's baby, Stephanie, who was born eight weeks early.

Tana can gaze at her daughter in real time and get answers for her many questions.

The nurses in the Maxine Dunitz Children's Health Center have dubbed the program "BabyTime."

"It is electronic, but it is so reminiscent of what normal bonding would consist of -- all the auditory, all the visual cues."

Nurses noticed that these tiny babies were listening and benefited from hearing mom's voice.

"Their heart rate's nice and calm. Their breathing is a lot easier."

"See look she's trying to open her eyes. She hears you!!!"

"When we saw her respond when we were talking to her through the iPad, it was like she knows it's us talking to her! So it was great."

It's calming for mom too, perhaps making her recovery a little smoother so she can go from talking to her baby in real time to holding her in real life.

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