Date of Award

2011

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Nursing (MSN)

First Advisor

Mary Alice Hodge

Abstract

Electronic Fetal Monitoring (EFM) has been used as a tool for inpatient obstetrical care in the United States since the 1980's. The litigious nature of our society has caused much emphasis to be placed upon EFM use and interpretation; however, little evolution has occurred in monitoring techniques. The review of relevant literature found a significant gap in knowledge in regards to research of the current monitoring practice. Therefore, this study was aimed to look at the effect of remote monitoring, like the practice currently used in telemetry, on inpatient obstetrical care. The study used a retrospective review to look at three components including: reaction time of nurses, overall quality of tracing, and the Apgar score of the neonates. Study participants were selected at random from two groups, one prior to implementation of a remote monitoring protocol and one after implementation. All three components improved from the control group to the experimental group, yet only nurse reaction time was found to be statistically significant; therefore, additional research on this subject matter may be warranted. If valid, the impact of these findings is significant because they suggest the potential benefit of a new standard in care. Therefore, more research on the use of remote monitoring techniques is needed along with more data to determine the overall effectiveness in improving obstetrical care.

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