PGIMER Bhubaneswar chosen as WHO trial centre – ET HealthWorld

Bhubaneswar: Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER) and Capital Hospital Bhubaneswar will conduct research on use of steroids for improving outcomes in preterm new-borns. The World Health Organisation (WHO) has selected this institution as the centre to conduct the ‘WHO ACTION III Trial’.

ACTION stands for Antenatal CorticosTeroids for Improving Outcomes in preterm Newborns. WHO is conducting this multi-country, multi-centre and randomized trial of two doses of antenatal corticosteroids for women with a high probability of birth in the late preterm period in hospitals to improve the health of newborns.

Aim of this trial is to assess the benefits and possible harms of giving two regimens of antenatal corticosteroids to pregnant women between 34 weeks and 37 weeks when they are at risk of preterm birth. The researchers will also find out which steroids are suitable to save the lives of preterm babies. They will also try to know about the perfect doses for the safety of the mother and baby, said the official sources.

According to WHO, preterm babies are prone to serious illness or death during the neonatal period. Without appropriate treatment, those who survive are at increased risk of lifelong disability and poor quality of life. Infant death and morbidity following preterm birth can be reduced through interventions provided to the mother before or during pregnancy, and to the preterm infant after birth, it added.

Ayesha Mariette De Costa, scientist, department of maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health, WHO, Geneva visited the institute’s obstetrics and gynaecology department and special newborn care unit (SNCU) on May 4. This PG institute is the third centre in the country for this trial. Senior doctors will conduct this research work.

Nibedita Pani, director of the PG institute, said the WHO team has visited the institute twice to find out whether the hospital is suitable for the trial or not. “Finally, WHO has sent us a confirmation letter on Saturday to start the trial. This is a two-year-long research,” she added. She said this research will immensely help in solving the problems related to preterm birth of babies.

  • Published On May 8, 2023 at 10:30 AM IST

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