Time Perception during Neonatal Resuscitation

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Abstract

Objective

To assess the accuracy of time perception during a simulated complex neonatal resuscitation.

Study design

Participants in 5 neonatal resuscitation program courses were directly involved in a complex simulation scenario. They were asked to assume the role of team leader, assistant 1, or assistant 2. At the end of the scenario, each participant completed a questionnaire on perceived time intervals for key resuscitation interventions. During the scenario, actual times were documented by an external observer and video recorded for later review. In addition, participants were asked to evaluate their self-perceived level of stress and preparation.

Results

Health care providers (68 physicians and 40 nurses) were involved in 36 scenarios. Perceived time intervals for the initiation of key resuscitation interventions were shorter than the actual time intervals, regardless of the participant's role in the scenario. Self-assessed levels of stress and preparation did not influence time perception.

Conclusions

Health care providers underestimate the passage of time, irrespective of their role in a simulated complex neonatal resuscitation. Participant's self-assessed levels of stress and preparation were not related to the accuracy of their time perception. These findings highlight the importance of assigning a dedicated individual to document interventions and the passage of time during a neonatal resuscitation.

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