Full systematic physical examination of the newborn infant

Module code: MW2014

This module is facilitated through lead lectures and workshops, case studies, demonstration and simulation, directed reading and online learning. Guidance and support is provided by midwives trained in undertaking the full systematic examination of the newborn infant/Newborn and Infant Physical Examination (NIPE) and paediatricians to enable you to develop the skills to proficiently undertake the holistic examination of the newborn infant in clinical practice.

The physiology of the fetus is fundamentally different from that of the newborn infant and in this module, fetal physiology will be discussed alongside how the healthy term infant adapts to extra-uterine life. You will critically analyse the current evidence regarding the full systematic examination of the newborn infant and the subsequent decisions made about the infant’s care, including feeding practices.

The theoretical component of this module will correlate with the national newborn and infant screening programme standards. You will learn about the role of the midwife including the professional, ethical and legal responsibilities associated with examining and assessing the health of the newborn infant, including referral to other health care professionals. This will involve demonstrating effective communication skills in articulating information about the health and care of the newborn infant with the mother, family and other health care professionals, both through simulation in the skills laboratory and in clinical practice.

You will record all neonatal examinations that you undertake during this module (as well as throughout the remainder of the programme) in the Midwifery Ongoing Record of Achievement (MORA): ALL being verified by appropriately trained practitioners. This will also include reflection and critical analysis of your experiences in developing the knowledge and skills to undertake the full systematic physical examination of the newborn infant.

NB. This module constitutes part of the ongoing assessment for you to be deemed proficient in the full systematic physical examination of the newborn by the END of the programme. You will be required to observe a minimum of 10 examinations and undertake 30 full systematic physical examinations of the newborn infant, verified by a trained practitioner by the END of the programme. In addition, a summative assessment via a FULL objective structured clinical examination (OSCE) will be conducted by a midwife proficient in the examination or a paediatrician/neonatologist for you to demonstrate that you have sufficient knowledge and skill prior to portfolio completion to be deemed proficient at the point of registration.

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