Resuscitating babies that aren't breathing at birth has been identified as a highly effective intervention and its scale-up as a top research priority. Measuring the progress made in the scale-up of this intervention is however difficult, requiring the development of a proxy indicator.

This paper published by Josephine Exley, Nasir Umar, Sarah Moxon, Adamu Umar Usman and Tanya Marchant from the IDEAS project, the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and Data Research and Mapping Consult in the Journal of Global Health took a closer look at data for more than 17,000 births that took place in Gombe State.

Results showed that 81% of the facilities did not have all items of essential equipment required for resuscitation. Only 3% of the 117 interviews birth attendants demonstrated competence to perform resuscitation.

The proxy indicator developed to measure coverage and scale-up of basic newborn resuscitation was defined as: “percent of newborns born in a facility with the potential to provide newborn resuscitation”. The application of this indicator revealed substantial missed opportunities to provide life-saving care and highlights the need for greater focus on input as well as process quality in all levels of health facilities.

Authors

Josephine Exley

Research Fellow

Dr Nasir Umar

IDEAS Nigeria Country Coordinator and Research Fellow

Dr Tanya Marchant

IDEAS Principal Investigator and Associate Professor