Authors: Uzoma Uwakah, Nancy Smee
Neonatal mortality is an important global health indicator of a country. Nigeria has one of the highest neonatal mortality rates in the world. Rural portions of the country have higher rates of neonatal mortality, compared to urban areas. Problems related to asphyxiation result because resuscitation training is not targeted to the correct provider. Neonatal resuscitation training was given in three clinical sites in rural Nigeria, from October 23, 2015 to October 28, 2015. 70 participants aged 19-60 completed a 17-item questionnaire about neonatal knowledge and completed a 38- item hands-on skills checklist to measure their neonatal skill abilities. Training was given to community health extension workers (CHEWs), auxiliary nurses, traditional birth attendants (TBAs), nurse midwives, student nurse midwives, and nursing officers. To compare the mean scores between a pre-test and a post-test for both the knowledge questionnaire and the skills test, a dependent samples t-test was performed. For knowledge, the average score on the pre-test was 12.43±2.98, p<.0001 and the average score on the post-test was 14.74 ±2.16, p<.0001. Meaning that the average knowledge score increased by 2.31 points after the training. For skill, the average score on the pre-test was 21.87±6.58, p<.0001 and the average score on the post-test was 34.67±4.50, p<.0001, meaning that the average skills score increased by 12.8 points after the training. The implementation of a neonatal resuscitation training program in rural Nigeria, can improve neonatal resuscitation knowledge and neonatal resuscitation skill ability amongst TBAs and other birth attendants. This has the potential to reduce the high neonatal mortality rates in rural communities.
Keywords: Neonatal resuscitation; neonatal mortality; rural health; international health