Experiences of student midwives in the care of women with perinatal loss: a qualitative descriptive study

Alghamdi, Reem and Jarrett, Patricia (2016) Experiences of student midwives in the care of women with perinatal loss: a qualitative descriptive study. British Journal of Midwifery, 24 (10). pp. 715-722. ISSN 0969-4900

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Abstract

Background: Student midwives often encounter perinatal loss, such as stillbirth and neonatal death, as part of their experience of clinical practice. Coping with these events can be challenging because loss and death are the antitheses of birth, which predominates midwifery practice. There has been limited research on how student midwives are supported when caring for women with bereavement; however, poor support may have repercussions for future practice.

Aim: The aim of this study is to explore the experiences of final-year student midwives when caring for women with perinatal loss.

Methods: Two focus groups were conducted with 10 final-year BSc (Hons) Midwifery students. The focus groups lasted approximately 1 hour and used a semi-structured interview schedule. Data were analysed using thematic analysis.

Findings: Four key themes were identified from the data: preparation for perinatal loss; ‘just dealing with it’; contradiction and challenges with the role of the midwife; and emotional impact and coping strategies.

Conclusions Final-year student midwives believed they were ill-prepared in caring for women with perinatal loss, reported difficulties in communicating with women and believed they were excluded from their care. Students valued support from the bereavement midwife and identified effective strategies which helped them cope with bereavement and loss.

Item Type: Article
Research Areas: A. > School of Health and Education > Adult, Child and Midwifery
Item ID: 21474
Notes on copyright: This document is the Accepted Manuscript version of a Published Work that appeared in final form in British Journal of Midwifery, copyright © MA Healthcare, after peer review and technical editing by the publisher. To access the final edited and published work see: http://dx.doi.org/10.12968/bjom.2016.24.10.715
Depositing User: Patricia Jarrett
Date Deposited: 01 Mar 2017 15:43
Last Modified: 17 Jul 2019 21:26
URI: https://eprints.mdx.ac.uk/id/eprint/21474

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