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Does parental presence affect workload during neonatal resuscitation?
  1. Emily Zehnder1,
  2. Brenda Hiu Yan Law1,
  3. Georg M Schmölzer2
  1. 1 Department of Pediatrics, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
  2. 2 Neonatology, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
  1. Correspondence to Dr Georg M Schmölzer, Neonatology, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB T6G 2R3, Canada; georg.schmoelzer{at}


Background Parents often prefer being present during neonatal resuscitation and benefit from this experience. We aim to determine if parental presence during neonatal resuscitation affects the perceived workload of healthcare providers.

Methods Perceived workload was measured using the multidimensional retrospective National Aeronautics and Space Administration Task Load Index survey. Over 3 months, healthcare providers were asked to complete a paper and pencil survey following their participation in a neonatal resuscitation. Surveys also collected healthcare providers’ reports of parental presence during resuscitation.

Results 204 surveys were completed. Of these 183 (90%) had complete information about parental presence. Overall workload of healthcare professionals was significantly lower when at least one parent was present (33; 16–47) compared with when no parents were present (46; 29–57) during the resuscitation (p=0.0004).

Conclusion This work supports the presence of parents during neonatal resuscitation. Parental presence during neonatal resuscitation was associated with decreased overall workload experienced by healthcare providers.

  • neonatology
  • nursing care
  • resuscitation

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  • Contributors EZ, BHYL and GMS were responsible for conception and design, collection and assembly of data, analysis and interpretation of data, drafting of the article, critical revision of the article for important intellectual content, and final approval of the article.

  • Funding EZ is supported by the Maternal and Child Health Scholarship Program and its funders University of Alberta, Stollery Children's Hospital Foundation, Women and Children's Health Research Institute (WCHRI), and Lois Hole Hospital for Women. GMS is a recipient of the Heart and Stroke Foundation/University of Alberta Professorship of Neonatal Resuscitation, a National New Investigator of the Heart and Stroke Foundation Canada, and an Alberta New Investigator of the Heart and Stroke Foundation Alberta.

  • Disclaimer The authors have no financial relationships relevant to this article to disclose and no current funding source for this study. The funder had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

  • Ethics approval The Royal Alexandra Hospital Research Committee and the Health Ethics Research Board, University of Alberta (Pro00090092) approved this study.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data availability statement All data relevant to the study are included in the article or uploaded as supplementary information.