1. Section Editor(s): Pfeifer, Gail M. MA, RN

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Stillbirths in developing countries decrease when nurses or midwives assist births. Investigators per formed a two-year "before-and-after" evaluation of training in birthing techniques in rural communities in Argentina, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Guatemala, India, Pakistan, and Zambia to determine whether rates of death from all causes in the first postpartum week would be reduced. All levels of birth attendants received training in the World Health Organization's "Essential Newborn and in pediatric resuscitation. Mortality in the first seven days after birth wasn't reduced, but the rate of stillbirths was; subgroup analysis showed that stillbirths decreased even more when nurses, midwives, or traditional birth attendants assisted at delivery, although not when physicians assisted. The full report, published in the February 18 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine, is available for free online at