Saving Babies Worldwide through Resuscitation: An Interview with Dr. Nalini Singhal

Saving Babies Wordwide

Dr. Nalini Singhal and Teddy Kyomuhangi, Healthy Child Uganda Program Manager.

Dr. Nalini Singhal smiles broadly when speaking about her work with Helping Babies Breathe (HBB) – a global health skills training program in 60 countries which is saving newborn lives. A Neonatologist at the Foothills Hospital and professor of Pediatrics, Dr. Singhal travels widely with the HBB program. Healthy Child Uganda (HCU) caught up with her in Calgary in Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets 2017 download

HCU:  You helped to develop the Helping Babies Breathe material together with colleagues at the American Academy of Pediatrics. Tell me how that came about.

Dr. Singhal:  There are four of us who are editors for the Global Resuscitation Task Force. We wanted to use simulation to improve teaching but existing equipment was too costly and not easily sterilized. Laerdal Global Health, developed NeoNatalie simulation dolls, penguin suction bulbs, and reusable easy to clean bags and masks, sold at cost to help neonatal resuscitation.

Saving Babies Wordwide

Neonatalie simulation doll for neonatal resuscitation training.

HCU:  How did you approach the educational component of Helping Babies Breathe?Watch movie online The Transporter Refueled (2015)?

Dr. Singhal:  My role with colleagues was to simplify and demystify newborn resuscitation, to make it possible for anyone to do it anywhere in the world. We designed pictorial teaching materials with flip chart, based on the latest science but adapted to learners in low resource settings. We undertook a Delphi Review with international experts including WHO, Beta tested, and incorporated the feedback.

HCU:  So how is it working?

Dr. Singhal:  We tested in a region in India where the Neonatal Mortality was low. The neonatal mortality was not affected, but the study did show a drop in the number of still births after Helping Babies Breathe was implemented
(24% reduction in all stillbirths and a 46% reduction in fresh stillbirths).
NeoReviews Vol.15 No.9 September 2014

HCU:  Tell me about the next steps for HBB.

Dr. Singhal:  With Dr. Doug McMillan (professor emeritus at University of Calgary) and Dr Carl Bose Editor and others we developed an “Essential Newborn Care” package and we are working on “Essential Care of the Small Baby”. Laerdal is designing a Premie Natalie simulation doll for us, which we will be beta testing in September and October in Nepal and Uganda.

(Interview July 24, 2014 with Heather MacIntosh, Sr Advisor, Healthy Child Uganda, Calgary, Canada)

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