Neonatal infections are estimated to account for a quarter of the 2·8 million annual neonatal deaths, as well as approximately 3% of all disability-adjusted life-years. Despite this burden, few data are available on incidence, aetiology, and outcomes, particularly regarding impairment. We aimed to develop guidelines for improved scientific reporting of observational neonatal infection studies, to increase comparability and to strengthen research in this area. This checklist, Strengthening the Reporting of Observational Studies in Epidemiology for Newborn Infection (STROBE- NI), is an extension of the STROBE (Strengthening the Reporting of Observational Studies in Epidemiology) statement. STROBE-NI was developed following systematic reviews of published literature (1996-2015), compilation of more than 130 potential reporting recommendations, and circulation of a survey to relevant professionals worldwide, eliciting responses from 147 professionals from 37 countries. An international consensus meeting of 18 participants (with expertise in infectious diseases, neonatology, microbiology, epidemiology, and statistics) identified priority recommendations for reporting, additional to the STROBE statement. Implementation of these STROBE-NI recommendations, and linked checklist, aims to improve scientific reporting of neonatal infection studies, increasing data utility and allowing meta-analyses and pathogen-specific burden estimates to inform global policy and new interventions, including maternal vaccines.
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