Midwifery student continuity of care - A qualitative pedagogical study regarding students' perceptions
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Midwifery research - reproductive, perinatal and sexual health, Department of Health Sciences, Lund University, Lund, Sweden
Publication date: 2023-10-24
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Maria Ekelin   

Midwifery research - reproductive, perinatal and sexual health, Department of Health Sciences, Lund University, Lund, Sweden
Eur J Midwifery 2023;7(Supplement 1):A114
It is suggested that access to the continuity of care (CoC) model by a midwife or a midwifery student, throughout pregnancy and postnatally, is beneficial for mothers and infants. In Sweden, maternity care is based on a fragmented organization, and CoC is not implemented routinely within maternity care or midwifery education. At a midwifery program in southern Sweden, the new pedagogical program “Midwifery student all the way” regarding CoC for midwifery students has been introduced on a trial basis. The aim of this pedagogical study was to describe students’ perception of providing CoC during pregnancy, childbirth, and the postnatal period.

Material and Methods:
A focus group interview with midwifery students who voluntarily had shown interest and participated in the pedagogical program “Midwifery student all the way” during the years 2021-2023 has been carried out. Further data collection is ongoing. A qualitative method with an inductive and phenomenographic approach was utilized.

So far nine students participated in the project as well as in the interview. Their ages ranged from 26-45 years (mean 32 years) and their years as authorized nurses ranged between 4 and 20 years (mean 8 years). They were interviewed at the end of their third and last semester just before graduation. Preliminary results show that participation in the pedagogical program helped students in their learning and professional development. They reported an increased holistic understanding of the care for pregnant women and insights into the value of a known midwife, especially for the birthing process, which they would not want to be without. Challenges were the integration of the project with other courses and family life. Students acknowledged the importance of a strong anchoring of the project at the clinics, group supervision, and an adaptation of written assignments in the midwifery program.

Preliminary results show that continuity of care within midwifery education is possible and beneficial to students even when the healthcare model is fragmented.

The authors would like to thank the participating students.
The authors have no conflicts of interest to disclose.
There is no funding for this research.
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