EGA Institute for Women's Health


Global Neonatal Health

Global Neonatal Health

Sub Saharan Africa studies

Intrapartum-related neonatal deaths are the 5th most common cause of deaths among children under 5. WHO estimates are of 814,000 neonatal deaths. In additionthere is a significant burden of morbidity (estimated at 42 million DALYS)


  • To understand risk factors associated with neonatal encephalopathy in a sub Saharan Africa hospital setting and to work with local doctors and health ministers to reduce death and adverse outcomes.
  • In infants born preterm, to work with local teams to improve outcomes by introducing a package of basic neonatal care such as thermal care, kangaroo care, infection control, CPAP


Prof Nicola Robertson
Prof Anthony Costello
Dr Cally Tann
Dr Kathy Burgoine
Dr Jane Hassell 

Examples of current projects

  • Cally Tann
    The ABAaNA study (‘Associations between Birth Asphyxia and infection amongst Newborns in Africa: perinatal risk factors for neonatal  encephalopathy in Uganda’) is an unmatched case control study led by Dr Cally Tann, with the main aim of understanding the causal chain of pre-disposing factors, exposures and events, and specifically the role of common perinatal infections, in the development of NE.

Other on-going studies

  • Jane Hassell
    Aetiology of Cerebral Palsy in a Child Neurology clinic in Uganda.
  • Kathy BurgoineAn audit of preterm infants at a hospital setting in  Uganda: their delivery, gestation and postnatal outcome.


  • Higgins RD, Raju T, Edwards AD, Azzopardi DV, Bose CL, Clark RH, Ferriero DM, Guillet R, Gunn AJ, Hagberg H, Hirtz D, Inder TE, Jacobs SE, Jenkins D, Juul S, Laptook AR, Lucey JF, Maze M, Palmer C, Papile L, Pfister RH, Robertson NJ, Rutherford M, Shankaran S, Silverstein FS, Soll RF, Thoresen M, Walsh WF; Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Hypothermia Workshop Speakers and Moderators. Hypothermia and other treatment options for neonatal encephalopathy: an executive summary of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver NICHD workshop. J Pediatr. 2011 Nov;159(5):851-858
  • Robertson NJ, Nakakeeto M, Hagmann C, Cowan FM, Acolet D, Iwata O, Allen E, Elbourne D, Costello A, Jacobs I. Therapeutic hypothermia for birth asphyxia in low-resource settings: A pilot randomised controlled trial. The Lancet. 2008;372(9641):801-3.
  • Hagmann C, Robertson NJ, Acolet D, Chan D, Onda S, Nyombi N, Nakakeeto M, Cowan F. Cranial ultrasound findings in well newborn Ugandan infants. Arch Dis Child Fetal Neonatal Ed. 2010 Sep;95(5):F338-44.
  • Robertson NJ, Hagmann CF, Acolet D, Allen E, Nyombi N, Elbourne D, Costello A, Jacobs I, Nakakeeto M, Cowan F. Pilot randomized trial of therapeutic hypothermia with serial cranial ultrasound and 18-22 month follow-up for neonatal encephalopathy in a low resource hospital setting in Uganda: study protocol. Trials. 2011 Jun 4;12:138. doi: 10.1186/1745-6215-12-138.
  • Hagmann CF, Robertson NJ, Acolet D, Nyombi N, Ondo S, Nakakeeto M, Cowan FM. Cerebral measurements made using cranial ultrasound in term Ugandan newborns. Early Hum Dev. 2011 May;87(5):341-7. doi: 10.1016/j.earlhumdev.2011.01.044. Epub 2011 Feb 24.