Delphi consensus statement on intrapartum fetal monitoring in low-resource settings

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

  • Natasha Housseine
  • Marieke C. Punt
  • Joyce L. Browne
  • Janneke van ‘t Hooft
  • Maaløe, Nanna
  • Tarek Meguid
  • Gerhard B. Theron
  • Arie Franx
  • Diederick E. Grobbee
  • Gerard H.A. Visser
  • Marcus J. Rijken

Objective: To determine acceptable and achievable strategies of intrapartum fetal monitoring in busy low-resource settings. Methods: Three rounds of online Delphi surveys were conducted between January 1 and October 31, 2017. International experts with experience in low-resource settings scored the importance of intrapartum fetal monitoring methods. Results: 71 experts completed all three rounds (28 midwives, 43 obstetricians). Consensus was reached on (1) need for an admission test, (2) handheld Doppler for intrapartum fetal monitoring, (3) intermittent auscultation (IA) every 30 minutes for low-risk pregnancies during the first stage of labor and after every contraction for high-risk pregnancies in the second stage, (4) contraction monitoring hourly for low-risk pregnancies in the first stage, and (5) adjunctive tests. Consensus was not reached on frequency of IA or contraction monitoring for high-risk women in the first stage or low-risk women in the second stage of labor. Conclusion: There is a gap between international recommendations and what is physically possible in many labor wards in low-resource settings. Research on how to effectively implement the consensus on fetal assessment at admission and use of handheld Doppler during labor and delivery is crucial to support staff in achieving the best possible care in low-resource settings.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Gynecology and Obstetrics
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)8-16
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - 2019

    Research areas

  • Admission test, Fetal monitoring, Guidelines, Intermittent auscultation, Low- and middle-income countries, Low-resource settings

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