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Doctors help parents name babies to improve safety

Quality improvement project

Doctors help parents name babies to improve safety

BMJ published the Quality Improvement Report project that aimed to encourage early naming of infants and updating of medical records.

In Abu Dhabi, many parents fail to come up with names for their infants, even after they are discharged from hospital. Until a new baby is given a name, “Baby of” is used on the medical record, followed by the parents’ surname.

But as many surnames are the same, there is a risk of giving incorrect treatment to a baby - especially one born on the same day as another with the same surname.

Many babies leave hospitals without a first name, which may increase the risk of similar problems in future. There was a need for timely updating of medical records for the names of infants still using their parents’ names.

In 2013, the Sweihan Healthcare Centre had 174 registered patients as “Baby of” and 79% of these ranged between 1 and 7 years old.

Parents of children named “Baby of” were contacted by the clinic’s quality improvement team asking for documents to change their child’s name officially.

Initially, the project only managed to change 52 (30%) patient names. So healthcare professionals assisted by pointing out the implications of not changing their childrens’ names and an electronic document scanning service was introduced to facilitate the process.

After 6 months, data revealed that out of 174 patients, 143 (82%) have had their names changed in the system and a further 17 (10%) are pending. Only 3% of parents failed to submit their child’s documents and 5% are newly registered newborns at the clinic.

The authors of this study feel that “to be able to persuade the parents of these patients, the benefits (and the possible repercussions) must be carefully explained to encourage them to participate.” They suggest that clinicians should remind parents to start contemplating names for their children during routine pregnancy check-ups. Link to full report.

Dr. Kamal Babiker (Clinic Manager), Mr. Mohammed Nasser Al Mazrouei (Clinic Administrator), Mr. Romm el C. Amuan,
RN (Clinic Head Nurse), Ms. Luena Palacios (Senior Quality Officer), Dr. Fayeza Saif Nasir (Director of Quality - AHS),
Mr. Mohammed Hawas Al Sadid (CEO - AHS), Dr. Omar Naseeb Al Jabri (Chief Medical Officer - AHS), Ms. Louise
Bain (Chief Operating Officer - AHS)

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Mitali Wroczynski, Head of Strategic Partnerships, Global Health and Global Health Security; Dr Elisa Roma, Programmes and Partnerships Manager; and Amy Hilton, Head of Institutional Marketing at the award ceremony in Geneva.

Mitali says there is a need to look at the critical needs of healthcare systems worldwide beyond the identification and treatment of infectious diseases, and to also be mindful of non-communicable diseases.

It’s important to build resilient healthcare systems so that a workforce is capable of dealing with anything. When there is an outbreak, it’s also about maintaining the healthcare system where the outbreak is happening." 

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