OBJECTIVES: We sought to report the frequency of, circumstances surrounding, and outcomes of newborn falls in our hospital. We evaluated the impact of specific interventions on the frequency of newborn falls and the time between falls.
METHODS: We performed a retrospective study of newborn falls reported on our postpartum unit over a 13-year period. Demographic information and circumstances of falls were collected via an electronic event reporting system and medical record review.
RESULTS: There were 63 633 births and 29 newborn falls, yielding an average of 4.6 falls per 10 000 live births (median: 2 per year; range 0–5 per year). Newborns who sustained a fall were exclusively breastfeeding (75.9%), 24 to 48 hours of age at the time of the fall (58.6%), and had first-time parents (62.1%). At the time of the fall, most newborns were with the mother compared with being with the father or both parents (65.5% vs 34.5%); in the mother’s bed compared with being elsewhere, such as on a couch or chair, with a parent, or in the parent’s arms (62.1% vs 37.9%); and feeding at the time of the fall versus not (79.3% vs 20.7%). All newborns were monitored after the fall, with no adverse outcomes. Despite interventions, we continued to see cases of newborn falls, although the overall trend revealed decreasing falls per 10 000 patient-days and longer time between falls over the study period.
CONCLUSIONS: Newborn falls in our hospital are infrequent but continue to occur despite preventive efforts, highlighting the importance of continuous awareness and education.
- Copyright © 2018 by the American Academy of Pediatrics