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Midwifery. 2012 Dec;28(6):e857-64. doi: 10.1016/j.midw.2011.10.009. Epub 2011 Dec 12.

Attitudes of Swedish midwives towards management of extremely preterm labour and birth.

Author information

1
Department of Health Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, University Lund, Box 157, 221 00 Lund, Sweden. margaretha.danerek@med.lu.se

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

the aim of the study was to ascertain the attitudes of Swedish midwives towards management of very preterm labour and birth and to compare the attitudes of midwives at university hospitals with those at general hospitals.

DESIGN:

this cross-sectional descriptive and comparative study used an anonymous self-administrated questionnaire for data collection. Descriptive and analytic statistics were carried out for analysis.

PARTICIPANTS:

the answers from midwives (n=259) were collected in a prospective SWEMID study.

SETTING:

the midwives had experience of working on delivery wards in maternity units with neonatal intensive care units (NICU) in Sweden.

FINDINGS:

in the management of very preterm labour and birth, midwives agreed to initiate interventions concerning steroid prophylaxis at 23 gestational weeks (GW), caesarean section for preterm labour only at 25 GW, when to give information to the neonatologist before birth at 23 GW, and when to suggest transfer to NICU at 23 GW. Midwives at university hospitals were prone to start interventions at an earlier gestational age than the midwives at general hospitals. Midwives at university hospitals seemed to be more willing to disclose information to the parents.

KEY CONCLUSIONS:

midwives with experience of handling very preterm births at 21-28 GW develop a positive attitude to interventions at an earlier gestational age as compared to midwives without such experience.

IMPLICATIONS FOR PRACTICE:

based on these results we suggest more communication and transfer of information about the advances in perinatal care and exchange of knowledge between the staff at general and university hospitals. Establishment of platforms for inter-professional discussions about ethically difficult situations in perinatal care, might benefit the management of very preterm labour and birth.

PMID:
22169524
DOI:
10.1016/j.midw.2011.10.009
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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