1. ITV Report

New app bringing families closer to babies in neonatal units

A new app is allowing parents to keep up with updates on their sick baby when they can't be physically with them.

The vCreate app has recently been given full NHS approval after undergoing extensive testing.

The app allows nursing staff to record videos and upload the footage to a secure site for parents and family members to view.

Nursing staff can take and upload video. Credit: ITV News

"It's a really nice tool that the nursing staff can use when parents - mothers and fathers - and families aren't able to visit the unit," Ben Coles, a neonatal nurse at St Michael's Hospital in Bristol, told ITV News.

One family using the app is the Hinders, whose baby Saul has been in neonatal care at St Michael's since he was born last October.

Saul's condition means he cannot breathe at night without help from a ventilator, and due to work pressures and the demands of a young family, his parents cannot be with him 24/7.

Charlotte Hinder with son Saul. Credit: ITV News

"It is heartbreaking to leave your baby in hospital, and I'm leaving him with strangers, he's my most precious possession and trusting him with other people is really difficult," his mum Charlotte said.

She and her young family have used the app keep an eye on Saul from their home in Swindon.

"I can know that he is happy, and being well looked after when we are not here, so at times like Christmas when I had to be with my other children at home to give them a normal Christmas," she said.