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Women and healthcare providers' perceptions of a midwife-led unit in a Swiss university hospital: a qualitative study.

Maillefer F, de Labrusse C, Cardia-Vonèche L, Hohlfeld P, Stoll B - BMC Pregnancy Childbirth (2015)

Bottom Line: Existing research has provided convincing evidence that MLUs lead to better maternal and neonatal outcomes when compared to traditional models.They not only improve the level of satisfaction amongst women, but are also associated with reduced healthcare costs.This study showed that women and healthcare providers were favourable towards the development of a new care model, while taking into account the specific expectations and barriers raised by participants.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: University Hospital of the Canton of Vaud (CHUV), 1011, Lausanne, Switzerland. francoise.maillefer@hospvd.ch.

ABSTRACT

Background: The development of medical-led care in obstetrics over the past decades has contributed to improving outcomes for both mother and child. Although efficiency has improved in complex situations, unnecessary interventions are still practiced in low-risk pregnancies, contrary to international recommendations. A shift to a less interventionist model of care has encouraged many countries to review their policies on maternal health care and develop models such as the "midwife-led unit" (MLU) where the midwife plays a predominant role with a minimum of routine intervention. Existing research has provided convincing evidence that MLUs lead to better maternal and neonatal outcomes when compared to traditional models. They not only improve the level of satisfaction amongst women, but are also associated with reduced healthcare costs. This study aimed to explore the perceptions of women and healthcare providers regarding the creation of an MLU in a Swiss university hospital.

Methods: A descriptive research study using qualitative methods was conducted among pregnant women and new mothers in a Swiss maternity unit, including also midwives and medical staff. Data collection was carried out through one-to-one interviews, focus groups, and telephone interviews (n = 63). After transcription, thematic analysis was performed.

Results: The triangulation of perceptions of women and healthcare providers indicated support for the implementation of an MLU to promote physiological delivery. Most women welcomed the idea of an MLU, in particular how it could help in offering continuity of care. Healthcare providers were optimistic about the implementation of an MLU and recognised the need for some women to have access to a less interventionist approach. From the women's perspective, barriers concerned the lack of awareness of midwives' full scope of practice, while barriers for midwives and obstetricians were related to the challenge to develop a good interprofessional collaboration.

Conclusion: Alternative models to provide maternity care for low-risk women have been developed and evaluated widely in several countries outside Switzerland. This study showed that women and healthcare providers were favourable towards the development of a new care model, while taking into account the specific expectations and barriers raised by participants.

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Examples of subcategories, categories, and themes. (Inspired by B. Byrne [33]).
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License 1 - License 2
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4359486&req=5

Fig1: Examples of subcategories, categories, and themes. (Inspired by B. Byrne [33]).

Mentions: Several themes, categories, and sub-categories were identified as summarized in Figure 1 [31,33].Figure 1


Women and healthcare providers' perceptions of a midwife-led unit in a Swiss university hospital: a qualitative study.

Maillefer F, de Labrusse C, Cardia-Vonèche L, Hohlfeld P, Stoll B - BMC Pregnancy Childbirth (2015)

Examples of subcategories, categories, and themes. (Inspired by B. Byrne [33]).
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License 1 - License 2
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4359486&req=5

Fig1: Examples of subcategories, categories, and themes. (Inspired by B. Byrne [33]).
Mentions: Several themes, categories, and sub-categories were identified as summarized in Figure 1 [31,33].Figure 1

Bottom Line: Existing research has provided convincing evidence that MLUs lead to better maternal and neonatal outcomes when compared to traditional models.They not only improve the level of satisfaction amongst women, but are also associated with reduced healthcare costs.This study showed that women and healthcare providers were favourable towards the development of a new care model, while taking into account the specific expectations and barriers raised by participants.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: University Hospital of the Canton of Vaud (CHUV), 1011, Lausanne, Switzerland. francoise.maillefer@hospvd.ch.

ABSTRACT

Background: The development of medical-led care in obstetrics over the past decades has contributed to improving outcomes for both mother and child. Although efficiency has improved in complex situations, unnecessary interventions are still practiced in low-risk pregnancies, contrary to international recommendations. A shift to a less interventionist model of care has encouraged many countries to review their policies on maternal health care and develop models such as the "midwife-led unit" (MLU) where the midwife plays a predominant role with a minimum of routine intervention. Existing research has provided convincing evidence that MLUs lead to better maternal and neonatal outcomes when compared to traditional models. They not only improve the level of satisfaction amongst women, but are also associated with reduced healthcare costs. This study aimed to explore the perceptions of women and healthcare providers regarding the creation of an MLU in a Swiss university hospital.

Methods: A descriptive research study using qualitative methods was conducted among pregnant women and new mothers in a Swiss maternity unit, including also midwives and medical staff. Data collection was carried out through one-to-one interviews, focus groups, and telephone interviews (n = 63). After transcription, thematic analysis was performed.

Results: The triangulation of perceptions of women and healthcare providers indicated support for the implementation of an MLU to promote physiological delivery. Most women welcomed the idea of an MLU, in particular how it could help in offering continuity of care. Healthcare providers were optimistic about the implementation of an MLU and recognised the need for some women to have access to a less interventionist approach. From the women's perspective, barriers concerned the lack of awareness of midwives' full scope of practice, while barriers for midwives and obstetricians were related to the challenge to develop a good interprofessional collaboration.

Conclusion: Alternative models to provide maternity care for low-risk women have been developed and evaluated widely in several countries outside Switzerland. This study showed that women and healthcare providers were favourable towards the development of a new care model, while taking into account the specific expectations and barriers raised by participants.

Show MeSH