World Healthcare
Parents can view premature babies in ICU online
Apr 14, 2006 - 10:19:37 PM

A trial service here is enabling parents and relatives of premature babies to view the tiny infants online, a hospital said Friday.

A camera hooked up beside the baby's cot in the neonatal intensive care unit allows tired parents to view the live footage on 3G-enabled mobile phones, Singapore General Hospital said.

The Virtual Visit service is on a three-month trial, during which the infants go online for three 90-minute sessions a day.

The service launched by the hospital's department of neonatal medicine and Singapore Telecommunications was not intended to replace parental contact but to complement it, department head Yeo Cheo Lian said.

It "supplements parental contact and allows other family members to bond with the baby and be involved in his care right from the beginning", Yeo said.

The service is free during the trial period. Once it is over, parents will likely be charged about 5 Singapore dollars ($US 3.12) a day to cover the maintenance of the cameras, Yeo said.

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