PEDIATRICS recent issues

Catheter-Associated Urinary Tract Infection Reduction in a Pediatric Safety Engagement Network

BACKGROUND:

Catheter-associated urinary tract infections (CAUTIs) are a leading cause of health care–associated infection. Catheter insertion bundles (IBs) and maintenance bundles (MBs) have been developed to prevent CAUTIs but have not been extensively validated for use in pediatric populations. We report the CAUTI prevention efforts of a large network of children’s hospitals.

METHODS:

Children’s hospitals joined the Children’s Hospitals’ Solutions for Patient Safety engagement network from 2011 to 2017, using an open start time engagement approach, and elected to participate in CAUTI prevention efforts, with 26 submitting data initially and 128 at the end. CAUTI prevention recommendations were first released in May 2012, and IBs and MBs were released in May 2014. Hospitals reported on CAUTIs, patient-days, and urinary catheter-line days and tracked reliability to each bundle. For the network, run charts or control charts were used to plot CAUTI rates, urinary catheter use, and reliability to each bundle component.

RESULTS:

After the introduction of the pediatric CAUTI IBs and MBs, CAUTI rates across the network decreased 61.6%, from 2.55 to 0.98 infections per 1000 catheter-line days. Centerline shifts occurred both before and after the 2015 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention CAUTI definition change. Urinary catheter use rates did not decline during the intervention period. Network reliability to the IBs and MBs increased to 95.4% and 86.9%, respectively.

CONCLUSIONS:

IBs and MBs aimed at preventing CAUTIs were introduced across a large network of children’s hospitals. Across the network, the rate of urinary tract infections among hospitalized children with indwelling urinary catheters decreased 61.6%.

Pathogenic Yield of Genetic Testing in Autism Spectrum Disorder

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES:

Genetic testing is recommended for individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Pathogenic yield varies by clinician and/or patient characteristics. Our objectives were to determine the pathogenic yield of genetic testing, the variability in rate of pathogenic results based on subject characteristics, and the percentage of pathogenic findings resulting in further medical recommendations in toddlers with a Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition diagnosis of ASD.

METHODS:

We conducted a retrospective chart review of 500 toddlers, 18 to 36 months, diagnosed with Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition ASD (mean age: 25.8 months, 79% male). Subject demographics, medical and neuropsychological characteristics, and genetic test results were abstracted. Genetic results were divided into negative or normal, variants of unknown significance, and pathogenic. Subject characteristics were compared across results. Manual chart review determined if further recommendations were made after pathogenic results.

RESULTS:

Over half of subjects (59.8%, n = 299) completed genetic testing, and of those, 36 (12.0%) had pathogenic findings. There were no significant differences in Bayley Scales of Infant Development cognitive (P = .112), language (P = .898), or motor scores (P = .488) among children with negative or normal findings versus a variant of unknown significance versus pathogenic findings. Medical recommendations in response to the genetic finding were made for 72.2% of those with pathogenic results.

CONCLUSIONS:

Our findings reinforce the importance of genetic testing for toddlers diagnosed with ASD given the 12% yield and lack of phenotypic differences between subjects with and without pathogenic findings. The majority of pathogenic results lead to further medical recommendations.

Early Hypoxic Respiratory Failure in Extreme Prematurity: Mortality and Neurodevelopmental Outcomes

OBJECTIVES:

To evaluate the survival and neurodevelopmental impairment (NDI) in extremely low birth weight (ELBW) infants at 18 to 26 months with early hypoxemic respiratory failure (HRF). We also assessed whether African American infants with early HRF had improved outcomes after exposure to inhaled nitric oxide (iNO).

METHODS:

ELBW infants ≤1000 g and gestational age ≤26 weeks with maximal oxygen ≥60% on either day 1 or day 3 were labeled as "early HRF" and born between 2007 and 2015 in the Neonatal Research Network were included. Using a propensity score regression model, we analyzed outcomes and effects of exposure to iNO overall and separately by race.

RESULTS:

Among 7639 ELBW infants born ≤26 weeks, 22.7% had early HRF. Early HRF was associated with a mortality of 51.3%. The incidence of moderate-severe NDI among survivors was 41.2% at 18 to 26 months. Mortality among infants treated with iNO was 59.4%. Female sex (adjusted odds ratio [aOR]: 2.4, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.8–3.3), birth weight ≥720 g (aOR: 2.3, 95% CI: 1.7–3.1) and complete course of antenatal steroids (aOR: 1.6, 95% CI: 1.1–2.2) were associated with intact survival. African American infants had a similar incidence of early HRF (21.7% vs 23.3%) but lower exposure to iNO (16.4% vs 21.6%). Among infants with HRF exposed to iNO, intact survival (no death or NDI) was not significantly different between African American and other races (aOR: 1.5, 95% CI: 0.6–3.6).

CONCLUSIONS:

Early HRF in infants ≤26 weeks’ gestation is associated with high mortality and NDI at 18 to 26 months. Use of iNO did not decrease mortality or NDI. Outcomes following iNO exposure were not different in African American infants.

Trends in Human Papillomavirus Vaccination in Commercially Insured Children in the United States

OBJECTIVES:

The human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine was recommended in 2006 for girls and in 2011 for boys. The Healthy People 2020 goal for 2-dose HPV vaccination coverage is 80% by age 15 for girls and boys. We used nationwide population-based data to describe trends in HPV vaccination in children.

METHODS:

We conducted a cohort study nested within the MarketScan health care database between January 2003 and December 2017. Children were followed from the year they turned 9 until HPV vaccination, insurance disenrollment, or the end of the year when they turned 17, whichever came first. We estimated the cumulative incidence of at least 1- and 2-dose HPV vaccination, stratified by birth year, sex, and state. In secondary analyses, we evaluated the association between state-level vaccination policies and HPV vaccination coverage.

RESULTS:

This study included 7 837 480 children and 19.8 million person-years. The proportion of 15-year-old girls and boys with at least a 1-dose HPV vaccination increased from 38% and 5% in 2011 to 57% and 51% in 2017, respectively; the proportion with at least a 2-dose vaccination went from 30% and 2% in 2011 to 46% and 39% in 2017, respectively. By 2017, 2-dose HPV vaccination coverage varied from 80% in Washington, District of Columbia, among girls to 15% in Mississippi among boys and was positively correlated with legislation for HPV vaccine education and pediatrician availability.

CONCLUSIONS:

Despite the increasing trends in uptake, HPV vaccine coverage among commercially insured children in the United States remains behind target levels, with substantial disparities by state.

Mental Health and Timing of Gender-Affirming Care

BACKGROUND:

Gender-incongruent (GI) youth have high rates of mental health problems. Although gender-affirming medical care (GAMC) provides psychological benefit, some GI youth present to care at older ages. Whether a relationship exists between age of presentation to GAMC and mental health difficulties warrants study.

METHODS:

A cross-sectional chart review of patients presenting to GAMC. Subjects were classified a priori as younger presenting youth (YPY) (<15 years of age at presentation) or older presenting youth (OPY) (≥15 years of age). Self-reported rates of mental health problems and medication use were compared between groups. Binary logistic regression analysis was used to identify determinants of mental health problems. Covariates included pubertal stage at presentation, social transition status, and assigned sex.

RESULTS:

Of 300 youth, there were 116 YPY and 184 OPY. After presentation, more OPY than YPY reported a diagnosis of depression (46% vs 30%), had self-harmed (40% vs 28%), had considered suicide (52% vs 40%), had attempted suicide (17% vs 9%), and required psychoactive medications (36% vs 23%), with all P < .05. After controlling for covariates, late puberty (Tanner stage 4 or 5) was associated with depressive disorders (odds ratio 5.49; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.14–26.32) and anxiety disorders (odds ratio 4.18 [95% CI: 1.22–14.49]), whereas older age remained associated only with psychoactive medication use (odd ratio 1.31 [95% CI: 1.05–1.63]).

CONCLUSIONS:

Late pubertal stage and older age are associated with worse mental health among GI youth presenting to GAMC, suggesting that this group may be particularly vulnerable and in need of appropriate care.

Outcomes of Isolated Neutropenia Referred to Pediatric Hematology-Oncology Clinic

BACKGROUND:

Children with isolated neutropenia (absolute neutrophil count [ANC] <1500/μL) are frequently referred to pediatric hematology and oncology clinics for further diagnostic evaluation. Scant literature exists on interventions and outcomes for isolated neutropenia. We hypothesized that children will have resolution of their neutropenia without the need for intervention(s) by a pediatric hematologist and oncologist.

METHODS:

We performed a 5.5-year institutional review board–approved retrospective chart review of children referred to our pediatric hematology and oncology clinics for isolated neutropenia. Neutropenia was categorized as mild (ANC of 1001–1500/μL), moderate (ANC of 500–1000 μL), severe (ANC of 201–500/μL), or very severe (ANC of ≤200/μL).

RESULTS:

Among 155 children referred with isolated neutropenia, 45 (29%) had mild neutropenia, 65 (42%) had moderate neutropenia, 30 (19%) had severe neutropenia, and 15 (10%) had very severe neutropenia. Only 29 (19%) children changed to an ANC category lower than their initial referral category. At a median follow-up of 12 months, 101 children had resolution of neutropenia, 40 children had mild neutropenia, 10 children had moderate neutropenia, 3 children had severe neutropenia, and 1 patient had very severe neutropenia. A specific diagnosis was not identified in most (54%) children. The most common etiologies were viral suppression (16%), autoimmune neutropenia (14%), and drug-induced neutropenia (8%). Black children had a 3.5 higher odds of having persistent mild neutropenia. Six (4%) children received granulocyte colony-stimulating factor therapy.

CONCLUSIONS:

Most children referred for isolated neutropenia do not progress in severity and do not require subspecialty interventions or hospitalizations.

Pressure Urticaria in an Infant Appearing Similar to Physical Abuse

A healthy Hispanic boy was born via cesarean delivery after an uncomplicated pregnancy. At 4 weeks old , his parents brought him to the emergency department for bruising on both soles of the feet. At 6 weeks old, his parents brought him to primary care for new bruises on his arms and back. After evaluation, primary care referred the patient to the emergency department. The parents denied any recent trauma, fever, cough, decreased urine, or change in appetite. Because of 2 episodes of unexplained bruising, the Department of Children and Families was granted emergency custody of the child. Hematology and ophthalmology did not identify any clear abnormalities. Skeletal surveys were normal. Dermatology was consulted. The examination was normal except for pink blanching patches on the upper back and linearly arranged pink blanching papules on the right lower leg. No crusting, erosions, hyperpigmentation, purpura, petechiae, or ecchymoses were seen. These lesions completely resolved the next day. He tested positive for dermatographism and developed similar lesions on his soles after pushing his feet down onto a soft surface. The intermittent urticarial skin changes were most consistent with physical urticaria. Such lesions could be mistaken for trauma; however, blood vessel damage typically results in progressive coloration changes for >1 day. At the emergency court hearing, given the concurring medical opinions of the dermatologist, pediatrician, and Child Protective Services, the judge returned full custody to the parents. This case reveals the value of dermatologic expertise in assessing skin changes, particularly those associated with physical abuse.

E-cigarette or Vaping-Associated Acute Lung Injury and Hemophagocytic Lymphohistiocytosis

In this report, we describe the case of a 17-year-old boy with progressive respiratory failure requiring extracorporeal support who met clinical criteria for a presumptive diagnosis of electronic cigarette or vaping-associated acute lung injury (EVALI), with clinical, pathologic, and laboratory evidence of hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis (HLH) and macrophage activation syndrome (MAS). The patient in our report had a history of tetrahydrocannabinol and nicotine electronic cigarette use for months leading up to his presentation of fever, headache, emesis, and weight loss with respiratory distress. Multiple potential diagnoses were explored, and the patient’s respiratory status improved, and he was initially discharged from the hospital. Roughly one week later, the patient was readmitted for worsening respiratory distress. The patient then met sufficient criteria for a potential diagnosis of HLH and MAS (elevated ferritin level, inflammatory markers, and cytopenia) to warrant a bone marrow aspirate, which revealed rare hemophagocytic cells. Given the severity of his symptoms and laboratory evidence of HLH and MAS, the patient was started on a course of steroids and anakinra. Although laboratory markers improved after treatment, the patient’s respiratory failure worsened, ultimately progressing to a need for mechanical ventilation and extracorporeal support and leading to worsening multiorgan system failure and, ultimately, death. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report of a patient with a presumptive diagnosis of EVALI with evidence of HLH and MAS, raising the possibility that macrophage activation may play a role in the pathogenesis of EVALI.

Delayed Presentation of Meconium Ileus in an Infant With Cystic Fibrosis

Although infants with meconium ileus usually present with apparent symptoms shortly after birth, the diagnosis of meconium ileus and cystic fibrosis (CF) may be delayed, awaiting newborn screening (NBS) results. We present the case of an 11-day-old term girl with delayed passage of meconium at 48 hours who had 2 subsequent small meconium stools over the following week. There was a normal feeding history and no signs of abdominal distension or distress. She then presented with an acute abdomen, decompensated shock, bowel perforation, and peritonitis, requiring multiple intestinal surgeries. Her NBS for CF was positive, and CF was ultimately confirmed with mutation analysis. Her course was complicated by prolonged parenteral feedings and mechanical ventilation via tracheostomy. The infant was managed with soy oil, medium chain triglycerides, olive oil, fish oil lipids and experienced only transaminitis without cholestasis and no chronic liver sequelae, with subsequent normalization of her transaminases without treatment. Because her only symptom was decreased stool output and NBS results were unavailable, the CF diagnosis was delayed until she presented in extremis. Delayed meconium passage and decreased stool output during the first week of life should lead to suspicion and additional evaluation for CF while awaiting NBS results. Careful monitoring is indicated to prevent serious, life-threatening complications. The use of soy oil, medium chain triglycerides, olive oil, fish oil lipids for infants requiring prolonged parenteral nutrition may also be considered proactively to prevent cholestasis, particularly for high risk groups.

Electromagnetic Versus Blind Guidance of a Postpyloric Feeding Tube in Critically Ill Children

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES:

Postpyloric feeding tube placement is a time-consuming procedure associated with multiple attempts and radiation exposure. Our objective with this study is to compare the time, attempts, and radiation exposure using the electromagnetic versus blind method to place a postpyloric feeding tube in critically ill children. Our hypothesis is that using electromagnetic guidance decreases the procedure time, number of x-rays, and number of attempts, compared to the blind method.

METHODS:

Eleven pediatric nurses participated in a randomized controlled intention-to-treat study at an academic pediatric medical, surgical, and congenital cardiac ICU. University of Texas Health Epidemiology and Biostatistics generated a randomization sequence with sealed envelopes. A standard (2-sided) F-test of association between the electromagnetic and blind method yielded 40 subjects with 86% power. Data were analyzed with Fisher’s exact test for categorical variables and the Wilcoxon rank test for continuous variables, with data documented as median (interquartile range [IQR]).

RESULTS:

We randomly assigned 52 patients to either the electromagnetic (n = 28) or blind method (n = 24). The number of attempts and radiographs was at a median of 2 (IQR: 1–2.25) using the blind method, compared to the electromagnetic method at a median of 1 (IQR: 1.0–1.0; P = .001). Successful guidance was 96.4% with the electromagnetic method, compared to only 66.7% with the blind technique (P = .008). The total time required was 2.5 minutes (IQR: 2.0–7.25) with the electromagnetic method, compared to 19 minutes (IQR: 9.25–27.0) for the blind method (P = .001).

CONCLUSIONS:

Electromagnetic guidance is a superior, faster, and overall safer method to place a postpyloric feeding tube in critically ill children.

Persistent Hypertension in Children and Adolescents: A 6-Year Cohort Study

OBJECTIVES:

To determine the natural history of pediatric hypertension.

METHODS:

We conducted a 72-month retrospective cohort study among 165 primary care sites. Blood pressure measurements from two consecutive 36 month periods were compared.

RESULTS:

Among 398 079 primary care pediatric patients ages 3 to 18, 89 347 had ≥3 blood pressure levels recorded during a 36-month period, and 43 825 children had ≥3 blood pressure levels for 2 consecutive 36-month periods. Among these 43 825 children, 4.3% (1881) met criteria for hypertension (3.5% [1515] stage 1, 0.8% [366] stage 2) and 4.9% (2144) met criteria for elevated blood pressure in the first 36 months. During the second 36 months, 50% (933) of hypertensive patients had no abnormal blood pressure levels, 22% (406) had elevated blood pressure levels or <3 hypertensive blood pressure levels, and 29% (542) had ≥3 hypertensive blood pressure levels. Of 2144 patients with elevated blood pressure in the first 36 months, 70% (1492) had no abnormal blood pressure levels, 18% (378) had persistent elevated blood pressure levels, and 13% (274) developed hypertension in the second 36-months. Among the 7775 patients with abnormal blood pressure levels in the first 36-months, only 52% (4025) had ≥3 blood pressure levels recorded during the second 36-months.

CONCLUSIONS:

In a primary care cohort, most children initially meeting criteria for hypertension or elevated blood pressure had subsequent normal blood pressure levels or did not receive recommended follow-up measurements. These results highlight the need for more nuanced initial blood pressure assessment and systems to promote follow-up of abnormal results.

Childrens Relative Age and ADHD Medication Use: A Finnish Population-Based Study

OBJECTIVES:

The youngest children in a classroom are at increased risk of being medicated for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). We examined the association between children’s birth month and ADHD medication rates in Finland.

METHODS:

Using a population-based study, we analyzed ADHD medication use among children born in 2005 to 2007. Cases (n = 7054) were identified from the first purchase of medication for ADHD. Cox proportional hazard models and hazard ratios (HRs) were examined by birth month and sex. Finnish children start first grade in the year of their seventh birthday. The cutoff date is December 31.

RESULTS:

Risk of ADHD medication use increased throughout the year by birth month (ie, January through April to May through August to September through December). Among boys born in September to December, the association remained stable across cohorts (HR: 1.3; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.1–1.5). Among girls born in September to December, the HR in the 2005 cohort was 1.4 (95% CI: 1.1–1.8), whereas in the 2007 cohort it was 1.7 (95% CI: 1.3–2.2). In a restricted follow-up, which ended at the end of the year of the children’s eighth birthday, the HRs for boys and girls born in September to December 2007 were 1.5 (95% CI: 1.3–1.7) and 2.0 (95% CI: 1.5–2.8), respectively.

CONCLUSIONS:

Relative immaturity increases the likelihood of ADHD medication use in Finland. The association was more pronounced during the first school years. Increased awareness of this association is needed among clinicians and teachers.

A Short History of Helping Babies Breathe: Why and How, Then and Now

Helping Babies Breathe (HBB) changed global education in neonatal resuscitation. Although rooted in the technical and educational expertise underpinning the American Academy of Pediatrics’ Neonatal Resuscitation Program, a series of global collaborations and pivotal encounters shaped the program differently. An innovative neonatal simulator, graphic learning materials, and content tailored to address the major causes of neonatal death in low- and middle-income countries empowered providers to take action to help infants in their facilities. Strategic dissemination and implementation through a Global Development Alliance spread the program rapidly, but perhaps the greatest factor in its success was the enthusiasm of participants who experienced the power of being able to improve the outcome of babies. Collaboration continued with frontline users, implementing organizations, researchers, and global health leaders to improve the effectiveness of the program. The second edition of HBB not only incorporated new science but also the accumulated understanding of how to help providers retain and build skills and use quality improvement techniques. Although the implementation of HBB has resulted in significant decreases in fresh stillbirth and early neonatal mortality, the goal of having a skilled and equipped provider at every birth remains to be achieved. Continued collaboration and the leadership of empowered health care providers within their own countries will bring the world closer to this goal.

Beyond Newborn Resuscitation: Essential Care for Every Baby and Small Babies

Helping Babies Breathe (HBB) addresses a major cause of newborn mortality by teaching basic steps of neonatal resuscitation and improving survival rates of infants affected by intrapartum-related events or asphyxia. Addressing the additional top causes of mortality (infection and prematurity) requires more comprehensive education, including content on thermal and nutritional support, breastfeeding, and alternative feeding strategies, as well as recognition and treatment of infection. Essential Care for Every Baby (ECEB) and Essential Care for Small Babies (ECSB) use educational principles developed with HBB as a model for teaching basic newborn care. These programs complement the content provided with HBB, further integrate counseling of families, and advance the agenda of providing quality care to all infants at birth. ECEB and ECSB have further demonstrated that engagement of individuals through active participation in their education empowers providers at all levels. With added experience teaching and implementing ECEB and ECSB, the next generation of newborn educational programs will likely incorporate bedside teaching and clinical exposure, multimedia platforms for demonstrating clinical content, and added efforts toward quality improvement. Through ECEB and ECSB, the attention brought to the newborn health agenda with HBB has only grown. Although current global health issues pose new challenges in implementing this agenda, these programs together provide a critical framework to both educate and advocate for optimal care of every newborn.

Development and Impact of Helping Babies Breathe Educational Methodology

The educational pedagogy surrounding Helping Babies Breathe (HBB) has been transformative in going beyond a curriculum focused only on basic neonatal resuscitation; indeed, it created the framework for an educational program that has served as a model for replication for other impactful programs, such as the Helping Mothers Survive and other Helping Babies Survive curricula. The tenets of HBB include incorporation of innovative learning strategies such as small group discussion, skills-based learning, simulation and debriefing, and peer-to-peer learning, all of which begin the hard work of changing behaviors that may eventually affect health care systems. Allowing for adaptation for local resources and culture, HBB has catalyzed innovation in the development of simplified, pictorial educational materials, in addition to low-tech yet realistic simulators and adjunct devices that have played an important role in empowering health care professionals in their care of newborns, thereby improving outcomes. In this review, we describe the development of HBB as an educational program, the importance of field testing and input from multiple stakeholders including frontline workers, the strategies behind the components of educational materials, and the impact of its pedagogy on learning.

Helping Babies Survive: Lessons Learned From Global Trainers

BACKGROUND:

The Helping Babies Survive (HBS) suite of programs was launched in 2010 as an evidence-based educational package to train health care workers in low- and middle-income countries in neonatal resuscitation, immediate newborn care, and complications of prematurity. To date, there has been no purposeful examination of lessons learned from HBS trainers. Our intent with this study is to gather that data from the field.

METHODS:

To estimate the total global reach of the HBS program, we obtained equipment distribution data from Laerdal and HBS material download data from the HBS Web site as of March 2020. To understand the lessons learned from HBS trainers, we examined comments from trainers who recorded their trainings on the HBS Web site, and other first-hand accounts.

RESULTS:

More than 1 million pieces of equipment (simulators, flip charts, provider guides, and action plans) have been distributed worldwide. HBS materials have been downloaded from the Web site >130 000 times and have now been translated into 27 languages. HBS equipment and training has reached an estimated 850 000 providers in 158 countries. Qualitative analysis revealed 3 major themes critical to building successful and sustainable HBS programs: support, planning and local context, and subthemes for each.

CONCLUSIONS:

Lessons learned from experienced trainers represent a vital distillation of first-hand experience into widely applicable knowledge to be used to reduce potential failures and achieve desired outcomes. Findings from this study offer further guidance on best practices for implementing and sustaining HBS programs and provide insight into challenges and successes experienced by HBS trainers.

Helping Babies Breathe Global Development Alliance and the Power of Partnerships

The Helping Babies Breathe Global Development Alliance (GDA) was a public–private partnership created simultaneously with the launch of the educational program Helping Babies Breathe to accelerate dissemination and implementation of neonatal resuscitation in low- and middle-income countries with the goal of reducing the global burden of neonatal mortality and morbidity related to birth asphyxia. Representatives from 6 organizations in the GDA highlight the recognized needs that motivated their participation and how they built on one another’s strengths in resuscitation science and education, advocacy, frontline implementation, health system strengthening, and implementation research to achieve common goals. Contributions of time, talent, and financial resources from the community, government, and private corporations and foundations powered an initiative that transformed the landscape for neonatal resuscitation in low- and middle-income countries. The organizations describe the power of partnerships, the challenges they faced, and how each organization was shaped by the collaboration. Although great progress was achieved, lessons learned through the GDA and additional efforts must still be applied to the remaining challenges of prevention, widespread implementation, improvement in the quality of care, and sustainable integration of neonatal resuscitation and essential newborn care into the fabric of health care systems.

Innovations in Cardiorespiratory Monitoring to Improve Resuscitation With Helping Babies Breathe

Ninety percent of intrapartum-related neonatal deaths are attributable to respiratory depression, with the vast majority of these deaths occurring in low- and lower-middle–income countries. Neonatal resuscitation training with Helping Babies Breathe (HBB) decreases mortality from respiratory depression. Cardiorespiratory monitoring in conjunction with HBB can provide valuable resuscitation feedback for both training and bedside purposes. In this article, we discuss 3 innovations that couple cardiorespiratory monitoring with HBB: NeoNatalie Live, the Augmented Infant Resuscitator, and NeoBeat. NeoNatalie Live is a high-fidelity manikin that facilitates bag mask ventilation training through case scenarios of varying difficulty. The Augmented Infant Resuscitator is added in-line between a face mask and ventilation bag during bag mask ventilation training to provide users with real-time feedback on ventilation quality. NeoBeat is a battery-operated heart rate meter that digitally displays the newborn heart rate during bedside resuscitations. For each innovation, we review details of the device, implementation in the field, and areas for further research. Using early experience implementing these devices, we suggest building blocks for effective translation of training into improved care. We also highlight general challenges in implementation of devices in facilities in low- and lower-middle–income countries including considerations for training, adaptations to existing workflow, and integration into the ecosystem. Although the devices highlighted in this article hold promise, more data are needed to understand their impact on newborn outcomes.

Digital Health Innovations, Tools, and Resources to Support Helping Babies Survive Programs

The Helping Babies Survive (HBS) initiative features a suite of evidence-based curricula and simulation-based training programs designed to provide health workers in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) with the knowledge, skills, and competencies to prevent, recognize, and manage leading causes of newborn morbidity and mortality. Global scale-up of HBS initiatives has been rapid. As HBS initiatives rolled out across LMIC settings, numerous bottlenecks, gaps, and barriers to the effective, consistent dissemination and implementation of the programs, across both the pre- and in-service continuums, emerged. Within the first decade of expansive scale-up of HBS programs, mobile phone ownership and access to cellular networks have also concomitantly surged in LMICs. In this article, we describe a number of HBS digital health innovations and resources that have been developed from 2010 to 2020 to support education and training, data collection for monitoring and evaluation, clinical decision support, and quality improvement. Helping Babies Survive partners and stakeholders can potentially integrate the described digital tools with HBS dissemination and implementation efforts in a myriad of ways to support low-dose high-frequency skills practice, in-person refresher courses, continuing medical and nursing education, on-the-job training, or peer-to-peer learning, and strengthen data collection for key newborn care and quality improvement indicators and outcomes. Thoughtful integration of purpose-built digital health tools, innovations, and resources may assist HBS practitioners to more effectively disseminate and implement newborn care programs in LMICs, and facilitate progress toward the achievement of Sustainable Development Goal health goals, targets, and objectives.

Pages