Improving communication between obstetric and neonatology teams for high-risk deliveries: a quality improvement project

BMJ Open Qual. 2017 Dec 14;6(2):e000095. doi: 10.1136/bmjoq-2017-000095. eCollection 2017.


Summoning is a key component of communication between obstetrics and neonatal resuscitation team (NRT) in advance of deliveries. A paging system is a commonly used summoning tool. The timeliness and information contained in the page help NRT to optimally prepare for postdelivery infant care. Our aim was to increase the frequency that summoning pages contained gestational age and reason for NRT attendance to >90%. At baseline, 8% of pages contained gestational age and 33% of pages contained a reason for NRT attendance. Sequential Plan-Do-Study-Act cycles were used as our model for quality improvement. During the 8-month improvement period, the per cent of pages increased to 97% for gestational age and 97% for reason for NRT attendance. Measures of page timeliness, our balancing measure, did not change. Summoning communication between obstetric and NRT is crucial for optimal perinatal outcomes. The active involvement of all stakeholders throughout the project resulted in the development of a standardised paging tool and a more informative paging process, which is a key communication tool used in many centres.

Keywords: communication; neonatal; obstetrics; paging.