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Babies: Screening

Volume 503: debated on Thursday 7 January 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what professional qualifications are required for a health practitioner in the NHS to perform the Ortolani and Barlow manoeuvre at the newborn and six to eight week physical examination. (308274)

Registered medical practitioners undertake these examinations. They are most commonly done by general practitioners or paediatricians. They will have had additional training, but no further qualifications are required.

The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence clinical guideline, “Routine postnatal care of women and their babies”, states that within 72 hours of birth and at six to eight weeks the baby’s hips should be checked using the Barlow and Ortolani manoeuvres.

The guideline also advises that all health care professionals who care for mothers and babies should work within the relevant competencies developed by Skills for Health:

Relevant health care professionals should also have demonstrated competency and sufficient ongoing clinical experience in undertaking maternal and newborn physical examinations and recognising abnormalities.