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Neuro Behavioural Physiological Assessment of the Newborn

Code MWY 3440
MWY 4440
Duration 22 study days
Attendance Part-time via on-campus learning
Fees See the Fees and funding info below
Course leader Stephanie Michaelides


Develop specialist knowledge and advanced skills for examining neonates from birth to six weeks of age in this short course for nurses, health visitors and midwives at any stage in their career.

Specifically designed for a wide range of midwives, health visitors  and neonatal professionals who have at least six months' experience working with newborns, this course will equip you with the advanced knowledge and skills to undertake the examination of the neonate from birth to six weeks of age.

The course is guided by experienced practitioner and senior lecturer Stephanie Michaelides. Through a combination of theory and practice-based learning, plus supported clinical experience, you will explore key factors in the assessment of a newborn, such as the auscultation of chest sounds and neurological reflexes, with opportunities to reflect on your current role and the ways in which you can develop further as a highly-skilled leader in neonatal care.

The course is provided over 21 study days to enable you to maintain your employment while learning, this course will equip you with the crucial theories and techniques to identify early abnormalities and/or potential problems, including how to inform and prepare the newborn, parents and related professionals for the required care.

Armed with these valuable skills you will enhance your practice and career prospects across a wide range of new developments within the NHS, and also obtain 45 credits at Level 6 which can be put towards a GradCert Neonatal Care or BSc Midwifery (Top up) if you wish.

Course content

This short course will enhance your ability to administer a thorough physical examination of a newborn baby by exploring such topics as:

  • Introduction and overview of the neonate and their environment, maternal history  and gestational assessment
  • Relevant legal and statutory issues including the professional role of the midwife/nurse
  • Theory and practice necessary to undertake the complete/holistic examination of the neonate, with fetal and neonatal genesis, growth and development, applied to practice
  • Neonatal screening
  • Applied physiology and pathology of the following body systems:
    • Respiratory system
    • Cardiovascular system
    • Gastrointestinal system
    • Neurological Ssystem
    • Haematological systems
    • Skeletal system
    • Integumentary system
    • Immunological system
    • Reproductive system and Gender allocation
  • Glucose homeostasis and metabolism
  • Morphological system
  • Maternal-infant interaction ‘bonding’ and relationship formation
  • Psychological development of the neonate
  • Recognition of the effects of substance abuse on the fetus and neonate
  • Birth Injuries; the loss of a perfect baby; giving bad news
  • Genetic and chromosomal abnormalities
  • Current awareness in terms of  developments, research and evidence based practice in the context of examination of the newborn
  • Assessment, planning, evaluating and auditing of care
  • Decision making and clinical judgement development
  • Meeting the psychological, educational, social and physical needs of the neonate, parents and significant others
  • NMC Code of Professional Code of Conduct in relation to Examination of the new-born (record keeping roles and responsibilities - autonomy in action)
  • The Examination of the newborn as a holistic process
  • Resources, referral and working inter-professionally


You will be assessed through:

  • Written essay
  • Record of 70 examinations

Entry requirements

This programme is relevant to registered midwives, health visitors and neonatal nurses who have a minimum of six months midwifery/ neonatal nursing experience.

In addition:

  • You must be currently working in the clinical area and have at least six months experience in the care of the newborn
  • You must also provide evidence of your ability to study at Level 6

A visit to your working environment to assess your facilitation in practice may be required.

Please visit our CPD health practitioner webpage to download an application form and for more information on the application process.

Fees and funding

The fees* below refer to the 2022/23 academic year unless otherwise stated (2023/24 fees to be confirmed).

Per credit: £63
45 credits: £2,835

*Course fees are subject to annual inflation.

There are several funding options available:

  • Receiving course fees via CPD contracts between NHS trusts and Middlesex University
  • Paying your own fees
  • Sponsorship by your employer (but not under a CPD contract).

For more information for any of these options, including fee rates for self-funding/employer-sponsored students, please visit our dedicated funding page.

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