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The Transport and Outcome of Sick Outborn Neonates Admitted to a Regional and District Hospital in the Upper West Region of Ghana: A Cross-Sectional Study

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Department of Community Health, University of Ghana Medical School, P.O. Box 4236, Accra, Ghana
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Public Health Department, Tamale Teaching Hospital, P.O. Box TL 16, Tamale, Ghana
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Upper West Regional Hospital, P.O. Box 6, Wa, Ghana
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School of Medical Science, University for Development Studies, P.O. Box TL 1350, Tamale, Ghana
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Children 2020, 7(3), 22; https://doi.org/10.3390/children7030022
Received: 6 January 2020 / Revised: 6 March 2020 / Accepted: 8 March 2020 / Published: 20 March 2020
Optimum care of sick neonates often involves transporting them across different levels of care. Since their condition may deteriorate over time, attention needs to be paid to travel distances and how they are transferred. We examined the mode of transport, distances travelled, condition on arrival and outcome of outborn neonates admitted to a district and a regional hospital in Ghana using a cross-sectional study involving caregivers of neonates admitted to these hospitals. Information on referral characteristics and outcome were obtained from questionnaires and the child’s case notes. Overall, 153 caregivers and babies were studied. Twelve deaths, 7.8%, occurred. Neonates who died spent a median duration of 120 min at the first health facility they visited compared with 30 min spent by survivors; they travelled mostly by public buses, (41.7%), compared with 36.0% of survivors who used taxis. Majority of survivors, 70.2%, had normal heart rates on arrival compared with only 41.7% of neonates who died; hypothermia was present in 66.7% compared with 47.6% of survivors. These findings indicate that the logistics for neonatal transport were inadequate to keep the neonates stable during the transfer process, thus many of them were compromised especially those who died. Further studies are warranted. View Full-Text
Keywords: neonatal; transport; travel; distance; hypothermia; mortality; newborn neonatal; transport; travel; distance; hypothermia; mortality; newborn
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Tette, E.M.A.; Nuertey, B.D.; Akaateba, D.; Gandau, N.B. The Transport and Outcome of Sick Outborn Neonates Admitted to a Regional and District Hospital in the Upper West Region of Ghana: A Cross-Sectional Study. Children 2020, 7, 22.

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