Abrazo Arrowhead Campus and Abrazo West Campus are now offering an innovative system to digitally capture high-resolution newborn footprints that parents can use to create keepsakes for family and friends. 

Nurses use a handheld scanner instead of traditional inkpads for the footprints, which are stored in a secure digital system. Parents receive a certificate with the newborn’s footprints, which can later be customized online and downloaded for sharing.

The two Abrazo hospitals are the first in Arizona to use the CertaScan system, said Jerry Lawlor, director of Women’s and Infants’ Services at Abrazo West Campus. Parents can visit a special website to enhance the certificate with colors, different fonts and borders, and download a digital copy of the baby’s footprint.

“The system is safe for use on babies and provides improved footprint quality over the traditional inked footprint. Nurses like the system because it is easy to use, easy to adopt and replaces the time-consuming and messy ink and paper method,” added Brannan Hasl, MSN-Ed., RNC-OB, clinical perinatal educator at Abrazo Arrowhead Campus. 

“Newborn footprints are considered a tradition for parents to have as keepsakes, as well as a means of identifying children along with birth certificates,” said Hasl.

Information is stored in a password protected database that can be retrieved by the hospital where the footprint is taken and by the mother of the newborn. The baby’s photo and mother’s index fingerprints are included in the digital record.

“I think the new system is a great way to view your baby’s footprints and information about the time of birth, and the height and the weight, and it’s also pretty good for doing birth announcements and it’s easy to get straight to it online,” said Latosha Smith of Phoenix, who watched as couplet care nurses used the system shortly after her daughter’s birth. 

The digitally stored newborn footprints may also be used for precise identification in situations like an abduction, lost baby or natural disaster, offering parents an added sense of security, noted Hasl.

For more information on women’s and infants’ services at Abrazo Arrowhead Campus and Abrazo West Campus, visit AbrazoHealth.com.