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Key messages

  • Effective ventilation is the key to successful resuscitation.
  • The need for neonatal resuscitation at birth cannot always be anticipated or predicted.
  • At every birth, suitable equipment and staff must be available and prepared to resuscitate the newborn infant.
  • Ten per cent of newborns require resuscitation.
  • Newborn resuscitation is a critical skill that requires constant practice.

In June 2023, we commenced a project to review and update the Maternity and Neonatal eHandbook guidelines with a view to completion in 2024. Please be aware that pending this review, some of the current guidelines may be out of date. In the meantime, we recommend that you also refer to more contemporaneous evidence.

The aim of neonatal resuscitation is to prevent neonatal death and adverse long-term neurodevelopmental sequelae associated with perinatal asphyxia.

Guidelines for neonatal resuscitation

Australian Resuscitation Council logo

Safer Care Victoria endorses the Australian Resuscitation Council Neonatal Guidelines (Section 13) for guidance on the resuscitation of neonates.

Neonatal guidelines include:

  • Introduction to Resuscitation of the Newborn
  • Planning for Neonatal Resuscitation and Identification of the Newborn at Risk
  • Assessment of the Newborn
  • Airway Management and Mask Ventilation of the Newborn
  • Tracheal Intubation and Ventilation of the Newborn
  • Chest Compressions during Resuscitation of the Newborn
  • Medications or Fluids for the Resuscitation of the Newborn
  • The Resuscitation of the Newborn in Special Circumstances
  • After the Resuscitation of a Newborn
  • Ethical Issues in Resuscitation of the Newborn

You can also access the Australian and New Zealand Committee on Resuscitation (ANZCOR) Newborn Life Support Flow Chart.

Training in neonatal resuscitation

Safer Care Victoria endorses the neoResus training program which standardises the way newborn resuscitation is taught in Victoria.

neoResus logo - The Victorian Newborn Resuscitation Project

neoResus online learning modules include:

  • Key concepts and guidelines
  • Post resuscitation care

Read about the Online Learning Modules on the neoResus website.

Get in touch

Clinical Guidance Team
Safer Care Victoria

Version history

First published: December 2015
Last reviewed: February 2025

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