Adherence to hyperbilirubinemia guidelines by midwives, general practitioners, and pediatricians in Indonesia

Mahendra T.A. Sampurna, Kinanti A. Ratnasari, Risa Etika, Christian V. Hulzebos, Peter H. Dijk, Arend F. Bos, Pieter J.J. Sauer

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10 Citations (Scopus)


Severe hyperbilirubinemia, which may result in kernicterus, is seen more frequently in low and middle-income countries, such as Indonesia, than in high-income countries. In Indonesia midwives, general practitioners (GPs), and pediatricians are involved in the care of jaundiced newborn infants. It is unknown whether the high incidence of severe hyperbilirubinemia in this country is related to a lack of awareness of existing hyperbilirubinemia guidelines issued by, for example, the World Health Organization, the American Academy of Pediatrics, or the Indonesian Health Ministry, or to a lack of adherence to such guidelines. The aim of this questionnaire study was to assess health professionals’ awareness of existing guidelines and their adherence to these guidelines in daily practice. We handed out a ten-question questionnaire to midwives, GPs, and pediatricians that included questions about the professionals themselves as well as clinical questions. The midwives completed 291 questionnaires, the GPs 206, and the pediatricians 154, all of which we used for our analysis. Almost 30% of the midwives and 23% of the GPs were either unaware of any existing guidelines or they did not adhere to them. Only 54% of the midwives recognized the warning signs of severe hyperbilirubinemia correctly, compared to 68% of the GPs and 89% of the pediatricians. Twenty-eight percent of the midwives and 31% of the GPs indicated that their first follow-up visit was after 72 hours, while 90% of them discharged infants after less than 48 hours after birth. The awareness of and adherence to guidelines for preventing and treating hyperbilirubinemia is low amongst the midwives and GPs in Indonesia. This may be an important contributing factor in the high incidence of severe hyperbilirubinemia in Indonesia.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0196076
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2018


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