Ethiopian Neonatal Network Launched

Dr. Danielle Ehret, VON’s director of global health, and Dr. Jeffrey Horbar, VON chief executive and scientific officer, visited Ethiopia for six days in February to kick-off the Ethiopian Neonatal Network. Medical and nursing leaders shared excitement to form this national network within VON’s worldwide community of practice, and hope that this standardized data and “shared language” will lead to opportunities for collaboration and learning from each other, and substantial improvements in neonatal care in their hospitals and country.

Twenty of the largest academic and public hospitals across the country have started collecting data for submission to VON on all infants admitted to their neonatal units. The one-page data collection form was designed by Dr. Ehret collaboratively with multi-disciplinary colleagues in resource-limited environments. The data form emphasizes essential newborn care practices and quality of care metrics, while being harmonized with Ministry of Health requirements. Centers use the REDCap platform to submit data to VON, and members can access data in real-time to identify opportunities for improvement and implement data-driven quality improvement initiatives.

As our Ethiopian colleagues become leaders in Africa in neonatal quality improvement, we hope to scale to additional countries by 2020.