February 1985

Consistency of Care in an Intensive Care Nursery Staffed by Nurse Clinicians

Author Affiliations

From the Sioux Valley Hospital (Mr Martin and Ms Reid) and the Department of Pediatrics, University of South Dakota School of Medicine (USD) (Dr Fenton), Sioux Falls, and the Office of Educational Resources, School of Medicine, Vermillion, SD (Dr Leonardson).

Am J Dis Child. 1985;139(2):169-172. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1985.02140040071030

• Variables related to both the process and outcome of newborn intensive care were studied to evaluate care consistency in a level 3 Newborn Intensive Care Unit (NICU) where neonatal nurse clinicians function in a role usually held by pediatric house officers. In routine delivery of intensive care, there were no statistically significant diurnal variations in the overall mortality, maintenance of intravenous infusions, tolerance of oral feedings, or respiratory care except a decrease in frequency of blood gas sampling during the weekday days as compared with nights. Our data suggest that a tertiary NICU in which medical coverage by neonatologists is supplemented by carefully trained and supervised neonatal nurse clinicians provides a consistent level of care that does not vary between night and day or day of the week.

(AJDC 1985;139:169-172)