Midwifery students’: Developing an understanding of being ‘with woman’––A qualitative study
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Objectives: To explore and describe what student midwives, enrolled in one Western Australian (WA) university, had witnessed, learned and experienced regarding the concept of being ‘with woman’. Design: A qualitative descriptive design was chosen. Setting: A university in Perth, Western Australia. Participants: Nineteen student midwives from an undergraduate and a post graduate midwifery course.
Methods: Data were collected from audio-recorded interviews. Thematic analysis of interview transcripts was used to identify commonalities of perceptions and experiences of being ‘with woman’ for students. Data saturation guided when recruitment ceased and final sample size was achieved.
Findings: Student interviews revealed that when considering the concept of being ‘with woman’ students were able to give descriptors of what they interpreted the meaning of being ‘with woman’ to be. They also described factors that impacted their learning of how to be ‘with woman’. Included in their descriptors were that being ‘with woman’ enables informed choice, it creates a connection, it means the woman is at the centre of care and that it can occur in all contexts. The factors that impacted their learning of how to be ‘with woman’ were the importance of positive midwife role models, that providing continuity of care models accelerate learning, that the student role and workload can impact their perceived ability to be with woman and that they are aware it takes time to learn how to be ‘with woman’.
Conclusion and implications: The art and skills of being ‘with woman’ are central to midwifery practice; students in this study were able to demonstrate understanding of the concept and also highlight factors that influence their learning of how to be ‘with woman’. Findings can inform how the phenomenon of being ‘with woman’ can be intentionally introduced into midwifery programs, with particular emphasis on positive midwifery role models, realistic student workload and recognition of the value of the Continuity of Care Experience.
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"In the shape that she needs me": The 'with woman' relationship in three different practice contextsBradfield, Zoe ; Hauck, Yvonne; Duggan, Ravani; Kelly, Michelle (2019)Background: Being ‘with woman’ is central to midwifery philosophy, cited in statements by professional midwifery organisations around the world. Despite its asserted importance, very little research has been undertaken ...
Bradfield, Zoe ; Hauck, Yvonne ; Duggan, Ravani ; Kelly, Michelle (2019)© 2019 The Author(s). Background: Being 'with woman' is a central construct of the midwifery profession however, minimal research has been undertaken to explore the phenomenon from the perspective of midwives. The aim of ...
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