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Program to Cut Obstetric Complications


A new comprehensive safety initiative appears to reduce the rate of adverse obstetric outcomes in large, tertiary medical centers. The program’s developers aimed at improving communication, labor and delivery negligence, revamping escalation policies, setting upgraded protocols, and standardizing interpretation of fetal heart rate tracing. Brain injury is a very common problem and one they are trying to overcome.

The program was aimed at improving specific areas identified in an internal review. These areas revolved around poor communication between providers – nursing staff, triage staff, operating room staff, doctors, surgeons, etc. It also involved recreating an inadequate escalation policy and implementing protocols to alleviate the strain of a lack of standards. The program also aimed at providing a standardization of interpretation of fetal heart rate tracing.

Within the first year of the program, the combined rate of adverse outcomes dropped from 1.95% to 0.8%, and settled at about 0.9% through the second year, according to a study researching the program. In two of the individual outcomes specifically looked at — returns to the operating room and birth trauma — there were significant declines with no increases during the study period.

One of the researchers, in an interview, said the “parts of the initiative geared toward improving how team members interact with each other and standardizing terminology and interpretation of various tests and situations were probably the leading contributors to the lower complication rates.”

He implied that while these changes are not that difficult, they do call for a change in culture, which is showing to be absolutely critical and which definitely leads to long-lasting positive impact on the quality of care given.

A specialist reacts to the positive outcome by stating, “A comprehensive, multi-component perinatal safety initiative can offer significant and lasting improvements in preventing adverse obstetric outcomes, thereby improving patient safety and enhancing staff and patient experiences.”

Policies are programs are being improved and implemented in The Bronx and Brooklyn and across the nation because concerned citizens and their attorneys are pressuring hospitals and their staff – large and small – to mandate excellence in their care of children – and prevention of birth injury.

If the hospital you deliver your child in is not faithfully providing the best care possible, see your Manhattan Birth Injury Attorney as soon as possible in the case of a birth defect. You are probably owed just compensation for your loss.

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