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Epidemiology of newborn transport in India - The reality check


1 Department of Community Medicine, Medical College, Kolkata, West Bengal, India
2 Department of Pediatrics, Medical College, Kolkata, West Bengal, India
3 Department of Neonatology, Medical College, Kolkata, West Bengal, India
4 Department of Pharmacology, IPGMER and SSKM Hospital, Kolkata, West Bengal, India
5 Department of Biotechnology, DTU, Delhi, India
6 Department of Pediatric, Medical College, Kolkata, West Bengal, India

Correspondence Address:
Rakesh Mondal,
Department of Pediatrics, Medical College, Kolkata, West Bengal
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/mjdrdypu.mjdrdypu_336_19

Background: Transporting sick neonates from the periphery to a tertiary care unit is a challenge and transport-related factors can have a bearing on their survival. These factors influence ultimate survival in resource poor settings. Objectives: The objective is to evaluate the transport characteristics for sick newborns from peripheral centers to tertiary care referral hospital. Methods: A prospective study was done with sick newborns transported to our tertiary care teaching hospital over a period of 1 year. The transport logistics were recorded in detail and analyzed. The analyses were repeated for preterm and term babies separately. Results: There were 36.32% preterm babies in the study cohort of 961 newborns. The descriptive profile of the newborns enrolled in the study has been presented along with descriptive summary of the newborn transport logistics. Approximately 23% of babies were born to teen age mothers. Some prereferral counseling was done for only about 20% babies and <1% had vitals monitored during transport. Prereferral stabilization was scarce and around 41% babies had labored breathing or gasping at admission. As many as, 47% babies had no prereferral intervention and 31% had no referral notes; in only 3.3% instances, there was clear prior intimation to the referral unit. Conclusion: Sick newborn transport logistics are to be improved for reducing neonatal mortality in resource poor settings.


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