Fetal Heart Monitoring Education at Sky Ridge

Fetal Heart MonitoringFetal monitoring is a method of reducing negative outcomes for babies and mothers during delivery. A monitoring device is applied when the mother is admitted. The device allows clinicians to assess the baby's heart rate and watch for distress in the birthing process.

A strong, regular heartbeat is a sign that a baby is doing well during labor. A significant, prolonged drop in rate or intensity of the heartbeat is a sign of distress of a fetus that may, on occasion, necessitate a cesarean delivery in order to prevent injury to the baby.

HCA partnered with the Association of Women's Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses (AWHONN) to create a standardized fetal heart monitoring competency course.

Since 2002, approximately 5,000 nurses have voluntarily been trained through the joint program with HCA and AWHONN. Today, fetal heart monitoring is a standard competency in all 124 HCA facilities with birthing units. The use of monitoring strips has decreased OB claims, the major indicator of problems with births, at HCA facilities to less than 2.5 per 1,000 births.