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A known midwife can make a difference for women with fear of childbirth- birth outcome and womens experiences of intrapartum care

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Author list: Hildingsson, Ingegerd

Publication year: 2019

Start page: 33

End page: 38

Number of pages: 6

ISSN: 1877-5756

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.srhc.2019.06.004


Abstract

Background: There is evidence that continuity of midwifery care is beneficial to women. Women with fear of childbirth in Sweden are offered counselling, but receiving care from a known midwife during labour is unusual, despite its effects in reducing interventions and increasing birth satisfaction. The aim of this study was to describe and compare birth outcome and experience of intrapartum care among women with fear of childbirth who received intrapartum care from a known midwife, versus those who did not. Methods: An experimental study of 70 women referred to counselling due to fear of birth during pregnancy wherein the counselling midwife, when possible, also assisted during labour and birth. Results: Having a known midwife during labour and birth had a positive impact on fearful womens birth experience and their perception of pain, but there was no difference in onset of labour or mode of birth. Women who received care from a known midwife experienced better care with regards to information, participation in decision making and perception of control. Conclusion: This study indicates that having access to a known midwife might have an impact on womens birth experience. This study was limited by its small sample size and further research would need to randomise fearful women to counselling or continuity of care to determine the contribution of each to reducing fear.


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