Revision process for the European Standards of Care for Newborn Health

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The European Foundation for the Care of Newborn Infants (EFCNI) is happy to announce the first revision of the European Standards of Care for Newborn Health (ESCNH). The revision period corresponds to the lifecycle, which was assigned to every standard during its development to ensure that each standard is in line with most recent evidence. Seven additional standards were found to require an update due to recommendations given by Chair Committee members in the voting process or because new guidelines were available. In conclusion, there were 20 standards that needed revision in 2021.

In line with contemporary literature (1–4), EFCNI set up a public and an expert consultation for the respective standards to facilitate the revision process.

The public consultation gives professionals that already participated in the ESCNH as Topic Expert Group (TEG) members, parent organisations and further stakeholders such as professional/international organisations and industry partners the chance to provide feedback on the ESCNH in order to further improve quality. Additionally, EFCNI wants to ensure that the wider community has the opportunity to contribute and form the European Standards of Care for Newborn Health. The consultation period ran from the beginning of August 2021 until mid October 2021 and the consultation was conducted via an online survey.

For the expert consultation, independent specialists were invited to review one of the standards currently under revision to increase general acceptance and ensure the conclusiveness of evidence. EFCNI aimed at consulting one to two experts per standard. The expert consultation phase was conducted simultaneously to the public consultation and was accompanied by an online questionnaire.

If you are interested in becoming an independent reviewer for the current or future revisions of the European Standards of Care for Newborn Health, you can send us an email to

After both consultation phases ended, all feedback was consolidated by the medical director and the project coordinator at EFCNI. For reasons of transparency, all comments of the public consultation are published below. Respondents could request that their contribution are not published, when stating ample justification. In accordance with our privacy policy, names are not displayed.

Following the consultation phase, the first authors of the original standards received the consolidated comments of both consultations. They then reviewed the comments and revised the standards in agreement with their co-authors. Once a revised draft of the standard was available, the respective TEG chairs were asked for proof of content. The corresponding Chair Committee voting, which required an 80% majority for the update to be passed, was held in June and July 2022 for 8 majorly revised standards, in accordance with the original developing process.

Results of the public consultation

The results of the public consultation can be downloaded per standard by clicking on the respective standard below.

A summary of the results can be found here.

Medical care & clinical practice

Care procedures

Infant- & family-centred development care


Follow-up & continuing care

Patient safety & hygiene practice

Education & training

For further information on the revision process or the ESCNH you can contact us via email at

  1. NICE. Health and Social Care Directorate Quality standards Process guide [Internet]. 2020 [cited 2021 Jun 7]. Available from:
  2. Cowl J, Armstrong MJ, Schaefer C, Fielding J. How to conduct public and targeted consultation [Internet]. GIN; Available from:
  3. NHMRC. Guidelines for Guidelines: Independent review [Internet]. 2018. Available from:
  4. NHMRC. Guidelines for Guidelines: Public consultation [Internet]. 2018. Available from: