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Preparation for labour research

14 March, 2014

Preparation for labour research

Three studies are underway that explore preparation for labour from the perspectives of service users and providers. Posted: 14 March 2014 by Rob Dabrowski

Three studies are underway that explore preparation for labour from the perspectives of service users and providers in England.

‘Women still denied human rights’

The linked studies will look at antenatal preparation now and in the future, use of the resource pack Birth and Beyond and whether women’s needs are met. 

Researchers from the Universities of Nottingham and Liverpool are behind the studies.

The findings will be considered against existing evidence and a set of checklists will be developed against which service providers can evaluate the preparation for labour that they offer parents.

A stakeholder event will be held at the end of the project to present and support interpretation of the findings and facilitate incorporation into practice and service delivery.

Helen Spiby, professor in midwifery, on behalf of the research team, said: ‘We are delighted to be carrying out this work, as midwives will know, research into antenatal preparation has been very limited.'

Study one will explore the service users’ perspectives of antenatal education in focus groups held in pregnancy and a few weeks after birth, in four different areas in England.

Study two will include up to four midwives’ focus groups to explore views about whether current antenatal education meets women’s needs and to identify any suggested areas for inclusion.

Study three is a service evaluation, which is mapping current provision of antenatal education and preparation for labour in England and will evaluate the use of the Preparation for Birth and Beyond resource pack developed by the Department of Health.

The research is funded by, but independent of, the Bupa Foundation, a medical research charity and endorsed by the RCM. 

Helen added: ‘Thank you to those who are completing questionnaires, or who have already participated in focus groups, or who are supporting the participation of parents.’

Further information can be obtained from the research team by emailing the research secretary Julie Corden.

Findings of the study are due to be available in 2015.

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