Effects of a Continuity of Preterm Infant Care Program on Parenting outcomes and Service Utilization Rates

Patcharaporn Kaewwimol1, *, Manyat Ruchiwit1, 2, Jen-Jiuan Liaw3
1 Faculty of Nursing, Thammasat University, Pathum Thani 12120, Thailand
2 Faculty of Nursing, Rattana Bundit University, Pathum Thani 12120, Thailand
3 School of Nursing, National Defense Medical Center, Taipei 114, Taiwan, ROC

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© 2022 Kaewwimol et al.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Faculty of Nursing, Thammasat University, Pathum Thani 12120, Thailand; E-mail:



After transition to home, most preterm infants exhibit higher readmission rates due to lack of readiness for hospital discharge and inadequate discharge preparation. Continuity of care during transitional care is an essential intervention for achieving parental readiness and performance in this group.


The study aims to analyze the effects of continuity of care program for parents with preterm infants (CCPI) on parental performances, parental readiness, and service utilization rates post-discharge.


A randomized controlled trial evaluated 92 dyads of preterm infants and parents. They were randomly assigned to two groups. The experimental group received the CCPI with routine nursing care, and the control group received only routine nursing care. The parental readiness and parental performance questionnaires were completed by the parents and analyzed using analysis of covariance (ANCOVA). The effectiveness of the CCPI in reducing the service utilization rates post-discharge was demonstrated using RM-ANOVA.


The parents’ performance who participated in the CCPI was significantly higher, as was their readiness for hospital discharge than the parents of the control group (p< 0.01). In addition, the service utilization rates for the samples significantly decreased (p< 0.01) at the fourth week after discharge. However, there was no significant difference between the first- and second-week post-discharge.


The study findings may help policymakers deploy the CCPI for parents with preterm infants while suggesting that the CCPI should be used to promote growing preterm infants to reduce post-discharge service utilization rates significantly.

Keywords: Continuity of care, Preterm infant, Parental performances, Parental readiness, Service utilization rates, Randomized controlled trial.