The Swazi Department of Health embraced the idea and a group of neonatal nurse practitioners, a neo-natologist and nurse midwives from The Ohio State University ran a course for three weeks on ‘Helping Babies Breath’ and Neonatal survival. Cathy from Mercy Air was privileged to be part of the team as a nurse/midwife.
The course had 21 participants and included nurses, midwives, doctors and pediatricians from six hospitals in Swaziland.
It included theoretical class room sessions and practical training on manikins, learning the skill of using the bag valve mask.
Students were taught how to give babies ventilation and assess the heart rate working together as a team.
Our students did a Ballard Test to determine the gestational age of the babies, a useful tool as many of the women are unsure of their due date.
|Rubbing a baby to stimulate it.|
Examination of the babies after delivery is part of the training, here the student is listening to the heart to detect any murmurs.
This tiny baby girl weighed in at only 900 grams, after being assessed we found that she was 31 weeks old.
Here she is after a couple of days, doing well and enjoying some skin to skin contact with mummy. Kangaroo care is frequently used for these premature babies.
An interesting case was of a mother, Futhi, who was in labour for most of the day and failed to progress so was transferred to theater for cesarean section. She was very afraid that her baby might die.
|Cathy with the baby a day after his birth.|
|A baby abandoned whilst the team was at the hospital also gets care.|
The Mercy Air team.