These sterile mylar warming blankets are used to keep an mother warm by reducing evaporative and connective heat loss. They are used by rescue teams in the U.S., by surgery teams to keep adults from becoming too cold during surgery and by the U.S. military and perhaps most visibly by marathon runners to keep their body heat in once they've stopped running. The technology was actually developed in the 1970s by NASA to deflect heat, but it was soon discovered that the paper thin material could also retain heat as well.
The warming blankets have a hood to wrap over the patient's head and they fold over at the bottom to keep the patient warm during transport. These blankets would be particularly effective in colder setting where mothers need to be transported from homes or facilities to hospitals.
This sterile device comes packaged in a tiny rectangle and is extremely lightweight.
It is widely known that hypothermia is a leading cause of morbidity among newborns and that an effective low-cost solution is maternal warming of the infant through skin to skin contact. But what role does maternal body temperature play? A 2008 study examining community management techniques for neonatal care in Shivgarh, India showed unexpectedly that a significant number of mothers also suffer from hypothermia