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A midwifery model of childbirth care - Development and implementation in Sweden and Iceland

Authors Marie Berg
Olof Asta Olafsdottir
Ingela Lundgren
Published in Optimizing childbirth across Europe - an intedisciplinary maternity care conference. 9-10 April 2014, Brussels. Part of COST Action IS0907: Childbirth Cultures, Concerns & Consequences: Creating a dynamic EU framework for Optimal maternity care.
Publication year 2014
Published at Institute of Health and Care Sciences
Language en
Keywords midwifery model, salutogenesis, childbirth care
Subject categories Prenatal and perinatal research


Introduction: Theoretical models are important as tools for guiding health care practice, also when optimising quality of maternity care. Aim of study: The aim was to identify and implement an evidence based woman centred midwifery model of childbirth care in the cultural context of Sweden and Iceland. Research methodology: With a qualitative hermeneutic approach a woman centred model of care was developed by a synthesis and meta-interpretation of own published qualitative studies (n=12) about women´s and midwives´ experiences of child birthing. for purposes of validity and reliability the model was assessed in six focus group interviews with practising midwives (n=30). for implementation of the model in praxis we had discussions with midwives in practice and with midwifery teachers. Ethical approval: Ethical approval was obtained in the earlier studies. Study findings: The model includes five main themes. Three central intertwined themes with sub-themes that involve interactions with each woman and family are: a reciprocal relationship; a birthing atmosphere; and grounded knowledge. The remaining two themes around the others, which likewise influence care, are the cultural context with hindering and promoting norms of a midwifery approach and the balancing act in basing work on midwifery philosophies, facilitating woman-centred maternity care in cooperation with other health professionals. Implementation and evaluation of this salutogenic woman centred midwifery model is in progress. Conclusion: In an era of rising technicality, the model with its balancing act could have positive impact on provision and outcome of childbirth care, raise normality of all birth and interdisciplinary care. This midwifery model of care could be a broad theoretical framework in maternity care and applied to other cultural contexts for the benefit of the women, babies and families.

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