Exploring problematic substance use among registered midwives - survey

By Sally Pezaro, School of Nursing, Midwifery and Health Survey

There is a united level of concern for the health and wellbeing of midwives in the United Kingdom (UK), where recent research has shown that many experience work-related stress and burnout. Such experiences may lead to midwives being at particular risk of substance use/misuse. In fact, in a recent review of fitness to practise (FtP) cases, a number of those put before the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) related to alcohol (n=208) and drug misuse (n=131).

Such episodes of addiction, alcohol and drug use are classed as individual health concerns. Yet, whilst they can leave a variety of healthcare professionals depleted, and both workplace safety and the safety of care compromised, relevant literature has thus far been largely dominated by the experiences and care of physicians. Consequently, researchers from Coventry University are now conducting the first nationwide study of registered midwives in relation to this issue.

The aims of this study are:

  • To investigate substance use among midwives registered in the UK
  • To explore the perceptions of midwives registered in the UK in relation to midwifery impairment
  • To explore perceptions of midwives registered in the UK in relation to organisational support
  • To identify incidents of midwifery impairment
  • To explore the help seeking behaviours of midwives registered in the UK with problematic substance use (PSU)
  • To identify health risks among midwives registered in the UK with PSU

The study is being led by Dr Sally Pezaro at Coventry University. The research team is looking for as many midwives registered to work in the UK to take part. Your participation in the survey is entirely voluntary, and you can opt out at any stage by closing and exiting the browser.

If you are happy to take part, you can access the survey via this link: http://bit.ly/MidwivesSubstanceUse

Your insights will help us to better understand the phenomena of substance use in midwifery populations and identify any barriers to support. The survey should take approximately 30 minutes to complete.  Your answers will be treated confidentially and the information you provide will be kept anonymous in any research outputs/publications.  Your data will be held securely on password-protected computers and project folders hosted by Coventry University.  All data will be deleted by the 1st of May 2021.  The project has been reviewed and approved through the formal Research Ethics procedure at Coventry University.  

For further information, or if you have any queries, please contact the lead researcher, Dr Sally Pezaro ([email protected]). 

Twitter handle: @SallyPezaro

Please note: We will not be able to track or identify you in any way. As such, there will be no repercussions arise from anything you disclose. We are only interested in understanding, so please help us by keeping your responses anonymous throughout.