Augmented Infant Resuscitator: Transitioning a Novel Behavior Change Innovation to Drive Newborn Ventilation Skills Enhancement to Improve Newborn Outcomes at Birth

Mbarara University of Science and Technology
Organization Location: 
Mbarara, Uganda

Birth asphyxia is a significant contributor to neonatal mortality directly resulting in up to 1.8 million stillbirths and newborn deaths annually. These deaths can be averted by empowering birth attendants to ventilate babies effectively. Effective ventilation requires birth attendants to reach quality ventilation quickly and minimally interrupt it. Mbarara University demonstrated that their innovation, the Augmented Infant Resuscitator (AIR), empowers health workers to achieve and maintain effective ventilation. AIR is a bold, universally compatible add-on device to existing resuscitation bag-mask devices that enables proper ventilation of newborn babies and records objective performance and outcome data. It provides intuitive, real-time, actionable feedback to birth attendants during ventilation. In a multi-center randomized controlled trial, birth attendants ventilating with AIR device feedback attained effective ventilation 51% faster (p=1.53e-4) and maintained effective ventilation 50% longer (p=2.82e-8) than control in two minute ventilation epochs. Additionally, AIR is driving peer-to-peer learning and behavior change in health facilities by encouraging group ventilation practice. The ease-of-use and intuitive feedback encourages “low dose, high frequency” practice. With this funding, Mbarara University will complete the Product Realization Process (PRP) in partnership with Philips Healthcare vital for the global commercialization of the AIR device, demonstrate resultant impact on skills acquisition, retention and newborn outcomes of AIR deployment in an international step-wedge cluster randomized trial, and develop the clinical-use AIR device.

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