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Rigshospitalet - a part of Copenhagen University Hospital
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Cardiotocography interpretation skills and the association with size of maternity unit, years of obstetric work experience and healthcare professional background: a national cross-sectional study

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INTRODUCTION: We aimed to examine whether cardiotocography (CTG) knowledge, interpretation skills and decision-making measured by a written assessment were associated with size of maternity unit, years of obstetric work experience and healthcare professional background.

MATERIAL AND METHODS: A national cross-sectional study in the setting of a CTG teaching intervention involving all 24 maternity units in Denmark. Participants were midwives (n = 1260) and specialists (n = 269) and residents (n = 142) in obstetrics and gynecology who attended a 1-day CTG course and answered a 30-item multiple-choice question test. Associations between mean test score and work conditions were analyzed using multivariable robust regression, in which the three variables were mutually adjusted.

RESULTS: Participants from units with > 3000 deliveries/year scored higher on the test than participants from units with < 1000 deliveries/year (3000-3999 deliveries/year: mean difference 0.8, p < 0.0001; > 4000 deliveries/year: mean difference 0.5, p = 0.006). Participants with < 15 years of work experience scored higher than participants with > 15 years of experience (15-20 years of experience: mean difference - 0.6, p = 0.007; > 20 years experience: mean difference - 0.9, p < 0.0001). No differences were detected concerning professional background.

CONCLUSIONS: CTG knowledge, interpretation skills and decision-making measured by a written assessment were positively associated with working in large maternity units and having < 15 years of obstetric work experience. This might indicate a challenge in maintaining CTG skills in small units and among experienced staff but could also reflect different levels of motivation, test familiarity and learning culture. Whether the findings are transferable to the clinical setting was not examined.

Original languageEnglish
JournalActa Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica
Volume96
Issue number9
Pages (from-to)1075-1083
Number of pages9
ISSN0001-6349
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2017

    Research areas

  • Cardiotocography, Clinical Competence, Cross-Sectional Studies, Data Interpretation, Statistical, Denmark, Educational Measurement, Female, Gynecology, Hospital Units, Humans, Internship and Residency, Maternal-Child Health Services, Midwifery, Obstetrics, Outcome Assessment (Health Care), Pregnancy, Journal Article
  • Health Sciences

ID: 52544233