The value of clinical mnemonics
Tom McEwan, midwifery lecturer and honorary advanced neonatal nurse practitioner, offers some aids for supporting staff and students to perform the newborn and infant physical examination
In the final article of my series exploring neonatal topics relevant to the midwife, I'd like to explore the newborn and infant physical examination (NIPE), and share some aids I have created to support health professionals and student midwives to undertake this screening examination.
National guidance suggests this examination should be conducted within the first 72 hours of life and then repeated at 6-8 weeks of age. However, the national standards for this examination only apply to the newborn screening as there is currently no mechanism to measure, monitor or report the quality of this examination when performed at 6-8 weeks (Public Health England [PHE], 2019). The specific screening elements of this examination relate to the heart, hips, eyes and testes but these are incorporated within a thorough and systematic assessment of the entire newborn or infant, including consideration of relevant history and any concerns raised by the parents or carer (PHE, 2016).
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