In this issue of Pediatrics, Flannery et al consider whether infants with a clear low risk of transmission of perinatal infection can be automatically excluded from consideration of sepsis screening and/or antibiotic therapy. They examine outcomes for infants who met low-risk criteria, including birth by cesarean delivery without labor, no rupture of membranes before delivery, and no clinical signs of sepsis in the mother or neonate, and find that even in premature infants, this constellation of clinical criteria was not associated with any cases of early-onset sepsis (EOS). Therefore, the authors conclude that infants who meet these criteria need not be screened for sepsis, even extremely and very premature infants.

Sepsis remains one of the most feared occurrences in any neonatal setting. Practitioners who have experienced a neonate becoming ill with sepsis have good reason to be cautious; neonatal sepsis can evolve rapidly and can be fatal even...

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