Infant Journal
for neonatal and paediatric healthcare professionals

When should a neonatal death be referred to the coroner? Initiation of a guideline to aid decision making

Despite improved survival, particularly for extremely preterm infants, sadly some neonates die. When this happens, it may be appropriate to refer the death to the coroner, however, there is huge variation in practice between settings regarding the coroner referral process. After a particular case concerning several hospitals, we reviewed available evidence and produced a guideline to aid this process, involving both neonatologists and our coroner’s office, and including parental concerns. This has enabled a systematic, transparent approach that is equal for all infants.

Narendra Aladangady
Consultant Neonatologist and Honorary Clinical Professor in Child Health, Neonatal Unit, Homerton University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, London, and Queen Mary University of London

Philippa Chisholm
Consultant Neonatologist, Neonatal Unit, Homerton University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, London

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neonatal paediatric transport; ambulance; noise exposure; hearing loss; occupational health
Key points
  1. Noise exposure and impact on hearing was assessed in babies transferred by the West of Scotland Neonatal Transport team over a period of 18 months.
  2. No hearing loss was demonstrated following inter-hospital transfer; however, noise reduction is still required and chronic noise exposure is still of concern.

Also published in Infant:

Occupational noise exposure to a dedicated neonatal transport team
Neonatal transport services are a new service provision within the UK NHS. This study assesses the noise exposure to staff working in a neonatal transport service. As with any new service provision, new developments bring new challenges, one of which being the health and safety of the personnel. Staff frequently reported temporary hearing impairment and tinnitus post transfer. This study assesses the noise exposure of a neonatal transport team and compares this exposure to legal limits.