The purpose of this document is to put forward the joint position and vision of an expert, global, multi-stakeholder working group on implementing KMC for all preterm or LBW infants as the foundation for small and/or sick newborn care within maternal, newborn and child health programs, and spur collaborative global action. Reversing the long-standing inequities in health care will require prolonged efforts; the scale-up of KMC as an essential service for all mothers and their preterm or LBW infants as a critical component of universal health coverage can serve as the key starting point.


  • Kangaroo mother care (KMC) is an intervention that enables the mother to take a central role in her own and her newborn’s care, thereby ensuring the power stays with the mother, and health workers support and respond to the mother’s and newborn’s needs.
  • It humanizes maternal and newborn care by empowering and involving those who care most for the infant, rather than focusing predominantly on technological solutions.
  • KMC can serve as a starting point for broader health-system redesign and service delivery transformation for maternal and newborn care, and a model of what can be accomplished when relevant stakeholders are empowered to play the roles naturally entrusted to them in the care of their newborns.

How to Use

Operationalizing this concept can serve as a strong foundation of highly efficient health systems that are rooted in the communities they serve and focus not only on preventing and treating illness but also on improving well-being and quality of life.