Assessing nurses' performance in proper adjustment of monitoring instruments in neonatal intensive care unit

Document Type: Original Article


1 assistant professor, neonatologist, Neonatal Research Center, emam reza hospital, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences (MUMS), Mashhad, Iran

2 Neonatal Research Center, Imam Reza Hospital, Faculty of Medicine, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences

3 Mashhad University of Medical Sciences

4 Head nurse of NICU of Imam Reza hospital, Faculty of medicine, Mashhad University of Medical Science, Mashhad, Iran

5 Abi Ali Sina Hospital, Mazarsharif, Afghanistan


Introduction: Monitoring serve to maintain physiologic variables within normal limits and when a parameter crosses a set threshold, an alarm is triggered. This study aimed to determine whether alarm limits were properly adjusted in neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) by nursing staffs or not.
Method: Data on alarm limits corresponding to three shifts of nursing work were recorded for newborn infants with cardio respiratory problems such as hyaline membrane disease, transient tachypnea of the newborns.pneumonia…who were admitted to the NICU of Imam Reza Hospital, Mashhad, Iran from March to Dec 2016.
Results: 75.1% of 95 subjects of this study were preterm infants, while the others were cases with gestational age more than 37 weeks. The average birth weight of neonates was 1939.15±899.2 gr. The upper alarm limit of pulse oximetry (95%) had been set correctly just in almost 26% of patients while, only at about 21% of all cases, a normal lower alarm limit (85%) of this variable was observed. Compliance with the normal lower and upper limits of alarm for heart rate (90 & 180 beats/min) was observed only in 10.46% and 18.6% of all infants, respectively.
Conclusion: This study revealed that alarm limits in NICU unstable neonates were frequently set outside the normal range.