Neonatal Airway - elearning for healthcare
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Available on the Learning Hub

This programme is available on the NHS Learning Hub. We recommend you read the information on this webpage to find out more about the programme before you access the learning (

More information about the Learning Hub and the migration of elfh programmes can be found here.

About the Neonatal Airway programme

Successful management of the neonatal airway is an essential skill during resuscitation and respiratory deterioration of babies. This initial elearning module explores the use of premedication for neonatal intubation and is aimed at all healthcare professionals who intubate or assist with intubation of babies.

Airway management in this age group is challenging due to several factors:

  • The size, shape, and immaturity of the neonatal airway and respiratory system
  • The availability of appropriately sized airway equipment for all neonates including the most premature
  • The speed of onset of hypoxia and bradycardia during airway procedures compared with older children or adults
  • Clinical staff have reduced opportunity to develop more advanced airway skills such as intubation.

In this first session, Premedication for Neonatal Intubation, we will explore the importance of premedication in preparation for neonatal intubation and consider the effects and potential side-effects of the drugs which are used for this purpose.

The session will take approximately 20 to 30 minutes to complete.

By the end of this session, you will be able to:

  • Describe the role of premedication for neonatal intubation
  • Identify the main drugs used for neonatal premedication in the UK
  • Describe the effects and potential side-effects of each drug
  • Explain how patient factors can affect the optimal combination of drugs

More information

The elearning programme was developed to support the BAPM Neonatal Airway Safety Standard Framework for Practice. This document sets out standards for safely managing the neonatal airway in UK neonatal services and provides guidance and supporting materials for implementation. The standards focus on unit capability and aim to ensure that a safe service is always available.The British Association of Perinatal Medicine (BAPM) is a professional association and registered charity. Established in 1976, BAPM improves standards of perinatal care by supporting all those involved in perinatal care to optimise their skills and knowledge, promote high quality, safe and innovative practice, encourage research, and speak out for the needs of babies and their families.

The Neonatal and Paediatric Pharmacy Group (NPPG) was formed in 1994 to improve the care of neonates, infants and children by advancing the personal development of pharmacists and the provision of quality pharmacy services in relation to practice, research and audit, education and training, communication and advice.

Primary and secondary audiences

Primary Audience: Paediatric and Neonatal Medical Staff (all grades) /Advanced Neonatal Nurse Practitioners/ Neonatal Nurses /Neonatal Pharmacists

Secondary Audience: Obstetric Anaesthetists, Paediatric anaesthetists, Trainee Anaesthetists


With thanks to all members of the BAPM Airway Safety Standards Working Group and Neonatal and Paediatric Pharmacy Leads for their comments.

Meet the team

  • Eleri Adams, Consultant Neonatologist, Oxford University NHS Foundation Trust
  • Joyce O’Shea, Consultant Neonatologist, NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde
  • Robert Tinnion, Consultant Neonatologist and Regional Transport Lead, Newcastle
  • David Bartle, Consultant Paediatrician, Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust
  • Catherine Armstrong, Consultant Neonatologist, Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust
  • Michelle Scott, Advanced Neonatal Nurse Practitioner, University Hospital Coventry & Warwickshire NHS Trust
  • Tim Cook, Consultant Anaesthetist, Royal United Hospitals  Bath NHS Foundation Trust
  • Nigel Gooding, Consultant Pharmacist Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
  • Stephen Tomlin, Associate Chief Pharmacist, Great Ormond Street Hospital
  • Neil Caldwell, Consultant Pharmacist, Wirral University Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

NHSE TEL team members

  • Karole Smith, Programme Manager – Technology Enhanced Learning, NHS England
  • Essi Niittymaki, Senior Project Manager – Technology Enhanced Learning, NHS England
  • Stephen Gibbons, Lead Learning Designer – Technology Enhanced Learning, NHS England
  • Catherine Moran, Graphic Designer – Technology Enhanced Learning, NHS England
  • Louise Garrahan, Senior Marketing and Communications Officer – Technology Enhanced Learning, NHS England

How to access

To access this elfh programme, you will require a Learning Hub account. If you do not have one, then you can register by selecting the Register button below. Note that if you hold a full elfh account, you can sign into the Learning Hub using your existing login credentials. 

 Register > 

To view the  Neonatal airway programme, select the View button below.  If you already have a Learning Hub account, you will also be able to login and access the resources within the programme . 

View >

NHS healthcare staff in England – ESR 

The Neonatal airway  programme is also available to NHS healthcare staff via the Electronic Staff Record (ESR). Accessing this e-learning via ESR means that your completions will transfer with you throughout your NHS career.  

Not an NHS organisation?  

If you are not an NHS health or care organisation and therefore do not qualify for free access to the Learning Hub, you may be able to access the service if you have an existing OpenAthens account. Please go to Learning Hub and sign in with your existing credentials. 

If you do not have an existing OpenAthens account, please contact elfh directly to check whether you may be eligible for access. 

Registering large numbers of users 

If you are a HR, IT or Practice Manager and would like to register and enrol large numbers of staff within your organisation for access onto the Neonatal airway programme, please contact elfh directly. 

Organisations wishing to use their own LMS 

For HR departments wanting to know more about gaining access to courses using an existing Learning Management System please contact elfh directly to express interest. 

More information 

Please select the following link for more information on how to use the Learning Hub 

elfh is a NHS England programme in partnership with the NHS and professional bodies