The impact of telemedicine on the quality of newborn resuscitation: A retrospective study

Jennifer L. Fang, Meredith S. Campbell, Amy L. Weaver, Kristin C. Mara, Virginia S. Schuning, William A. Carey, Christopher E. Colby

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective: We hypothesized that telemedicine consults provided by neonatologists to local care teams (termed teleneonatology) would improve the quality of high-risk newborn resuscitations that occur in community hospitals. Methods: This retrospective cohort study compared 47 newborns who received a teleneonatology consult during their resuscitation at a community hospital to 45 controls who did not. Controls were matched on gestational age, sex, admission diagnosis, and level of newborn care. A two-person expert panel blinded to the intervention reviewed demographic and resuscitation data for each patient and assigned a resuscitation quality rating using a 1–10 descriptive rating scale. Paired comparisons between groups were evaluated using the Wilcoxon signed rank test for continuous measures and the McNemar's test for dichotomous measures. Results: The median resuscitation quality rating was 7 for the teleneonatology group and 4 for the control group, with a median difference of 1 between matched pairs (P =.002). Neonates who received a teleneonatology consult were more likely to undergo measurement of temperature, glucose, and blood gases. When analyzing the 35 matched pairs that had a consult within one hour of birth, the positive impact of teleneonatology was greater (median rating 8 vs 4, median difference 2, P =.003). Subgroup analysis demonstrated teleneonatology significantly improved the resuscitation of preterm neonates (median rating 8 vs 4, median difference 1.5, P =.004) Conclusion: Teleneonatology improves the quality of high-risk newborn resuscitations that occur in community hospitals and increases adherence to process metrics. Earlier teleneonatology consults appear to have greater positive impact.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)48-55
Number of pages8
JournalResuscitation
Volume125
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2018

Keywords

  • Newborn resuscitation
  • Preterm birth
  • Telemedicine
  • Teleneonatology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Emergency Medicine
  • Emergency
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

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