The impact of a neonatal resuscitation programme (NRP) on the incidence, management and outcome of birth asphyxia was evaluated in 14 teaching hospitals in India. Two faculty members from each institution attended a neonatal resuscitation certification course and afterwards trained staff in their respective hospitals. Each institution provided 3 months pre-intervention and 12 months post-intervention data. Introduction of the NRP significantly increased awareness and documentation of birth asphyxia, as judged by an increased incidence of asphyxia based on apnoea or gasping at 1 and 5 minutes (p < 0.001 and < 0.01, respectively). A significant shift towards more rational resuscitation practices was indicated by a decline in the use of chest compression and medication (p < 0.001 for each), and an increase in the use of bag and mask ventilation (p < 0.001). Although overall neonatal mortality did not decrease, asphyxia-related deaths declined significantly (p < 0.01).