National Collaborative Perinatal Neonatal Network (NCPNN)
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Database / Database Methodology

1. NCPNN Database

2. Electronic Data Submission

The NCPNN database includes:

1. All live births
2. Stillbirths of at least 20 weeks gestation
3. Out born babies transferred within 28 days of life.

Data is collected daily from maternal and newborns medical charts and from direct interviews with the delivering mothers at participating hospitals. Data is collected by a local nurse, midwife or research assistant using a paper designed questionnaire. Data collectors undergo an extensive training on the NCPNN instrument and on data collection methods and pitfalls. Training is done by a network auditor to insure consistency and reproducibility of the data.

Three different types of questionnaire exist including: Normal Nursery (NN) , Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) and Stillbirth Admissions . These three instruments share a common section on parental socio-demographics and maternal medical and obstetric history.

The section covering neonatal data is most extensive in the NICU questionnaire. The questionnaires are modified and updated as the need arises, depending on observations and experiences from current collection. This flexible form of data collection allows a standardized collection while answering the needs of each region and hospital setting.

At this stage, completed forms are transported at the end of each month to the NCPNN coordinating center where data is entered into the NCPNN database. This will soon be replaced by the Electronic Data System. Continuous auditing of data collection and entry is performed.

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Electronic Data Submission


The NCPNN has developed electronic software for collecting and managing data from member hospitals. The software is a user friendly application, designed in three languages: English, French and Arabic. Data collected from hospitals using the software is directly submitted to the NCPNN database. The application offers to the hospital staff the possibility to manage all entered data at the hospital site with management reports available for the users to track their records, edit them and follow-up on entered data.

This software allows also amongst other things error checking prior to the submission of the data. At the coordinating center, information will be verified for completeness and reviewed for accuracy by looking for “unusual” and missing values on individual data items. Patient data at each participating center will be available to the respective site administrator only and patient identifiers will be stripped prior to data transfer to the coordinating center. Special effort has been drawn to address with the new application the different hospital settings, taking into consideration hardware and internet availability, access and speed. As such, data entered at member site can be later uploaded or sent by other “conventional” means (if internet access is not available) to the coordinating center. The software also presents many features for validity checks at the data entry stage where rules and warnings have been developed to avoid data entry mistakes. In addition, simple statistical tools are also available for the users to monitor the rates of entered indicators.

The software was designed to accommodate a growing database as well as any new related project, and to facilitate the management of all entered data for the administrator at the coordinating center.


For the member hospitals

  • Efficiently improve the accuracy of data (quality assurance)
  • Decentralize data entry (offline access)
  • Generate management and statistical reports
  • Provide online services
  • Allow electronic data submission to the centralized database

For the NCPNN administration

  • Accommodate a growing database
  • Allow user friendly change/update of questionnaires
  • Generate management and statistical reports
  • Integrate previous data

Available management reports

  • Site Data entry updates
  • Data entry performances
  • Individual users data summary
  • Data management summary
  • Birth during a period (coordinator center)
  • Missing report for non-mandatory indicators
  • Statistical reports
  • Annual report

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