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Students Train Peruvian Midwives, 100 Villagers about Resuscitation with Infant Simulator

Working with a newborn inflatable simulator known as NeoNatalie, five Denver School of Nursing (DSN) students ( teamed with two nonprofits, DB Peru ( and Helping Babies Breathe (, to train lay midwives in remote Peruvian villages about techniques to resuscitate newborns, said Marguerite Distel, RN, assistant professor and academic coordinator of DSN’s Global Health Perspectives (GHP) program.

“On our way out to the villages and tribal communities along the Napo River, we worked at the crowded health outpost of Mazan, a larger village located on the isthmus between the Amazon and Napo Rivers. We participated in a Helping Babies Breathe (HBB) training where the two trainers not only had been in Denver one year ago and knew of DSN but also were giving training to midwives in eight regions of the Amazon,” said Sue Hammerton, DSN adjunct professor of pharmacology.

DSN students, accompanied by Hammerton, Christina Bruce, Caitlin Connett, Brianna Essman, Kelly Lake and Ellis Whalen traveled by boat to all the remote Peruvian areas to participate in general adult nursing care, health education to villagers and vaccinations.

A key concept of HBB is The Golden Minute. Within one minute of birth, a baby should be breathing well or should be ventilated with a bag and mask. The Golden Minute identifies the steps that a birth attendant must take immediately after birth to evaluate the baby and stimulate breathing.

“When working with all the 31 midwives and health providers —including one male midwife—we decided not to use the mask for resuscitation since masks are in short supply in the jungle. We emphasized The Golden Minute, mouth-to-mouth and the gentle blow of air in our training.  The midwives embraced the simulation and went on to get training in breast and cervical cancer checks, PAP smears, glucose checks and other wellness and prevention methodologies,” Hammerton noted.

About Denver School of Nursing (DSN)Denver School of Nursing, 1401 19th St., Denver, is a private, post-secondary college that provides educational programs and training for nursing professionals. The college specializes in offering rigorous curricula, clinical site-based academic programs toward associate and bachelor degrees in nursing and distance-delivered academic programs toward a bachelor degree in nursing. DSN is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC), (, (800-621-7440). Its associate and baccalaureate programs are accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN), 3343 Peachtree Road NE, Suite 850, Atlanta, GA 30326 (404-975-5000). DSN is granted full approval for its associate and bachelors nursing programs by the Colorado State Board of Nursing. National Council of State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements (SARA) approval is maintained through the Colorado Department of Higher Education. For more information, call 303-292-0015 or visit







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