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New National Guideline for Stimulation of Infants with Microcephaly Released

New National Guideline for Stimulation of Infants with Microcephaly Released

Health Agency - The Ministry of Health makes available on Wednesday (13) to all professionals and managers in the country, the Early Stimulation Guidelines: Children 0 to 3 years late in the neuropsychomotor development due to microcephaly. The document was developed due to the urgency scenario given by the increase in cases of microcephaly throughout the country due to infection by zika virus. They are guidelines for the professionals of the teams of Basic Attention and Specialized Attention for the early stimulation. The content is directed to children with microcephaly and may also apply to other conditions or health conditions that interfere with neuropsychomotor development at this stage.

This is the first time that the Ministry of Health has gathered in a single document all the guidelines for stimulation children with developmental delays. "Does the Guidelines unify knowledge and care for children with microcephaly to promote stimulation in the shortest possible time, from zero to three years, which is the window of opportunity for reducing the level of impairment caused by malformation?" the Secretary of Health Care, of the Ministry of Health, Alberto Beltrame

Main points of the Guidelines

Elaborated with the support of researchers, specialists and professionals from several institutions of the country with experience and knowledge about early stimulation, the Guidelines complement the Protocol of Attention to Health and Response to the Occurrence of Microcephaly Related to Infection by zika virus. Launched on December 14, the Protocol directs care from prenatal care to the development of the child with microcephaly throughout the country.

The Guidelines address aspects related to the child's neuropsychomotor development, such as auditory development, visual, motor, cognitive and language skills, early stimulation, the use of assistive technology (walking sticks and wheelchairs), as well as other aspects such as the importance of playing and family participation in early stimulation. will assist the health professional in the elaboration of an early stimulation program that allows a better development of the child with microcephaly, especially until the three years, the period of greater response to the stimuli. For instance, in a visually impaired child it is possible to do stimulation from the use of light objects in a dark place and also place it to scroll from the object's visual follow-up.

In Primary Care, the material is directed the Basic Health Units, Family Health and Family Health Support Centers (NASFs). In the Specialized Attention, the target public is Home Care, Hospital, Specialized Outpatient and Newborn Care and Specialized Rehabilitation Centers.

Training course

The Ministry of Health prepares the launch of a course to train health professionals who will work in early stimulation. The course will be offered to physiotherapists, speech therapists, occupational therapists, psychologists, doctors, among other professionals who work with early stimulation and who work in the various services of the SUS Network (Basic and Specialized Care), such as NASF and Specialized Centers in Rehabilitation, which will be certified upon completion of the course.

The Ministry's goal is for at least 7,525 professionals to participate in this training. The course will be developed in partnership with the Federal University of Rio Grande do Norte. Tuition fees are due to start in March.

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