Assessment of clinicians’ knowledge and practices on safe transport of newborns with surgical conditions in western Kenya

  • P. Saula
  • Y. Kombe
  • G. Kikuvi

Abstract

Background: Neonatal ill health poses a great burden on the development of individuals, communities and societies, hence the adoption of specific goals and targets to reduce infant mortality worldwide. Many of the conditions that result in perinatal deaths can be prevented or treated without sophisticated and expensive technology. Subsequently, the World Health Organization (WHO) continues to advance education of clinicians on simple but critical interventions for the newborn during the first days of life, and the role of safe transport of newborns with surgical conditions during their referral to a tertiary-level hospital for specialized surgical care is pivotal.
Objective: To assess the clinicians’ knowledge and practices on safe transport of newborns with surgical conditions.
Setting: Newborn Units/Labour Wards of five county referral hospitals in Western Kenya, which refer newborns with surgical conditions to Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital (MTRH).
Materials and Methods: This was a cross-sectional descriptive study that was conducted on clinicians working in the Newborn Units/Labour Wards of 5 county referral hospitals. Interviewer-administered questionnaires were administered to assess their knowledge and practices on referral and safe transport of newborns with surgical conditions. Data on demographic characteristics, the clinicians’ knowledge on and practices of the principles of transporting newborns with surgical conditions, was analyzed.
Results: Fifty clinicians, 10 from each of the 5 county referral hospitals were recruited into the study. Their mean age was 32.8 ± 8.6 years, and the majority (34.0%) were nurses. Overall, the clinicians’ knowledge on safe transport of newborns with surgical conditions was poor, with a median score of 50.0% IQR=25.0, 87.5). There was no association between the clinicians’ knowledge scores on the principles of newborn transport, and the length of time that they had worked in their respective Newborn Units/Labour Wards (p=0.042). On practices, only 11 (22.0%) clinicians had participated in the procedure of transporting newborns.
Conclusions: The clinicians’ knowledge on, and practices of, safe transport of newborns with surgical conditions were poor.

Published
2020-04-10
Section
Articles

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eISSN: 0012-835X