- Treating babies with suspected early-onset neonatal infection within one hour of the decision to treat
- Using antibiotics benzylpenicillin and gentamicin as the first-choice treatment for suspected early-onset neonatal infection
- Performing a blood culture before administering first dose of antibiotics
- Offering child birth antibiotic prophylaxis in a timely manner to women whose babies are at higher risk of infection
- Early-onset neonatal infection occurs within 72 hours of birth
- Causes the death of one in four babies who are diagnosed, even when they are given antibiotics
- Nice's recommendations have now urged medical staff to treat infected babies within an hour of diagnosis
- The watchdog also says antibiotics should be used appropriately to avoid the development of bacterial resistance to treatment.
The healthcare watchdog says some hospitals are causing unnecessary delays in treating newborn babies suffering from infections.
The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence has published new guidance after finding variations in the treatment of babies with early-onset neonatal infection.
NICE found delays in recognising and treating sick babies, while many newborns were at risk of becoming resistant to treatment after "needlessly" receiving antibiotics.