Experiences of parents providing kangaroo care to a premature infant: A qualitative systematic review

Pei Fan Mu, Mei Yin Lee*, Yong Chuan Chen, Hui Chuan Yang, Shu Hua Yang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Parents who give birth to an unexpected preterm infant not only suffer a psychological impact, but, in addition, their roles as parent are full of uncertainty. As part of family-centered care, kangaroo care is an important way to support premature infants and their family. This review synthesizes qualitative studies on the experiences of parents who have used kangaroo care for preterm infants in neonatal intensive care units. English and Chinese databases were searched for relevant studies from 1970 to July 2018. The findings of qualitative studies were extracted and pooled using the Joanna Briggs Institute Qualitative Assessment and Review Instrument. A total of 731 studies were screened, and 9 were included. Five synthesized findings were identified: sense of emptiness of the parent's role, barriers in the translation of parental roles in kangaroo care, preparation enhances parental role expectations, kangaroo care enhances parental competency, and encouragement and support from family and friends. Through the implementation of kangaroo care, nurses are able to help prepare and guide parents, fit parents’ needs, and help improve their ability and self-confidence in their parental roles.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)149-161
Number of pages13
JournalNursing and Health Sciences
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2020


  • kangaroo care
  • meta-synthesis
  • neonatal intensive care unit
  • parent
  • premature infant


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