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Article
Publication date: 6 June 2016

Helen Woolnough and Jane Redshaw

The purpose of this exploratory qualitative study was to investigate anticipated and real career decisions made by two cohorts of professional women in the UK at differing stages…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this exploratory qualitative study was to investigate anticipated and real career decisions made by two cohorts of professional women in the UK at differing stages of the lifespan.

Design/methodology/approach

Career decisions made by two cohorts of professional women following the birth of their first child at different stages of the lifespan and satisfaction with these choices in retrospect were investigated. Data analysis followed a thematic approach, and comparisons between the two cohorts were made.

Findings

The study revealed much similarity between the two cohorts. The decisions women make regarding whether to return to work or not and the extent to which they are satisfied with their working arrangements are constrained by similar individual and organisational factors despite the 15-20 year gap.

Research limitations/implications

Although mothers in the UK now experience strengthened legislation concerning maternity benefits and entitlements and there have been advances in flexible working, progress in relation to supporting women in reconciling work and home life when they return to work is arguably limited.

Originality/value

This paper offers insights into the extent to which the career decisions made by professional women following the birth of their first child and satisfaction with these choices in retrospect have changed (or not) among two cohorts of professional women (15-20 years apart). The findings stress the importance of understanding the complex issues faced by mothers in the workforce and providing appropriate organisational support.

Details

Gender in Management: An International Journal, vol. 31 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1754-2413

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 6 October 2023

Joshua Dawe, Ellie McDonald, Elisha Riggs, Josef Szwarc and Jane Yelland

Access to professional interpreter services is a critical facilitator of positive health-care experiences when health-care professionals and women accessing maternity care are not…

Abstract

Purpose

Access to professional interpreter services is a critical facilitator of positive health-care experiences when health-care professionals and women accessing maternity care are not proficient in a shared language. Understanding interpreter demand is essential for the provision of professional interpreter services. This study aims to characterise interpreter requirements among women from nonrefugee and refugee non-English-speaking migrant backgrounds in Australian maternity hospitals.

Design/methodology/approach

This study analysed administrative data from four public maternity hospitals in Victoria, Australia. The primary outcome was the proportion of women from non-English speaking migrant backgrounds who required an interpreter during their maternity care, both overall and stratified by refugee and nonrefugee background. Adjusted logistic regression was used to estimate the association between migrant background and interpreter requirements.

Findings

Among the 6,771 women from non-English speaking migrant backgrounds included in analyses, 1,344 (19.8%) required an interpreter during their maternity care. The odds of requiring an interpreter were fivefold higher among women from refugee backgrounds compared to migrant women from nonrefugee backgrounds [adjusted odds ratio (aOR): 4.83; 95% confidence interval (CI): 4.13–5.65].

Practical implications

The study highlights the diversity in cultural backgrounds and migration experiences of women accessing maternity care within metropolitan public hospitals. The high interpreter requirements, particularly among women from refugee backgrounds, underscores the need for comprehensive and woman-centred interpreter services to attenuate disparities in hospital maternity care.

Originality/value

To the best of the authors’ knowledge, this study is the first to quantify the interpreter requirements of women from non-English-speaking migrant backgrounds in maternity hospital settings and make women comparisons between women from refugee and nonrefugee backgrounds.

Details

International Journal of Migration, Health and Social Care, vol. 19 no. 3/4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1747-9894

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 1 January 2008

Ivy Lynn Bourgeault, Eugene Declercq, Jane Sandall, Sirpa Wrede, Meredith Vanstone, Edwin van Teijlingen, Raymond DeVries and Cecilia Benoit

Purpose – This chapter critically examines the purportedly growing phenomenon of Maternal Request Caesarean Sections (MRCS) and its relative contribution to the rising caesarean…

Abstract

Purpose – This chapter critically examines the purportedly growing phenomenon of Maternal Request Caesarean Sections (MRCS) and its relative contribution to the rising caesarean section (CS) rates.

Methodology – We apply a decentred comparative methodological approach to this problem by drawing upon and comparatively examining empirical data from Canada, the US, the UK and Finland.

Findings – We find that the general argument that has emerged within the obstetric community, evidenced in particular by a recent “State of the Science” conference, is that the reduced risks and benefits of MRCS are evenly balanced, thus ethically it could be seen as a valid choice for women. This approach, taken in particular in the North American context, negates the problematic nature of accurately measuring, and therefore assessing the importance of maternal request in addressing rising CS rates. Moreover, although some of the blame for rising CS rates has focused on MRCS, we argue that it has a relatively minor influence on rising rates. We show instead how rising CS rates can more appropriately be attributed to obstetrical policies and practices.

Originality – In presenting this argument, we challenge some of the prevailing notions of consumerism in maternity care and its influence on the practice patterns of maternity care professionals.

Practical implications – Our argument also calls into question how successful efforts to address MRCS will be in reducing CS rates given its relatively minor influence.

Details

Patients, Consumers and Civil Society
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84855-215-9

Article
Publication date: 10 June 2014

Ron Gray, Debra Bick and Yan-Shing Chang

The purpose of this paper is to describe the major factors affecting health during pregnancy, birth and the postnatal period and outline the evidence for interventions to improve…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to describe the major factors affecting health during pregnancy, birth and the postnatal period and outline the evidence for interventions to improve outcomes in women and their children.

Design/methodology/approach

Selective review of the literature. A number of electronic bibliographic databases were searched, including the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, PubMed and PsycINFO, for relevant studies published since 1990. Papers were restricted to those published in English which presented data from studies conducted in high-income countries, with priority given to systematic reviews, randomised controlled trials and other quantitative studies which present a higher level of evidence.

Findings

Many factors may affect maternal and infant health during and after pregnancy. Potentially modifiable factors with an evidence base to support intervention include improving diet, and the avoidance of smoking, alcohol and illicit drugs. Good clinical management of underlying illness is also important, along with attempts to engage women in improving health prior to conception and postnatally rather than once pregnancy is established.

Research limitations/implications

The evidence base for interventions on some potentially modifiable risk factors is incomplete. There is good evidence of benefit from some health behaviours such as smoking cessation and uptake of breastfeeding and accumulating evidence of the benefit of some models of maternity care.

Practical implications

Good maternal health during and after pregnancy plays a key role in giving the child a better start in life. Improved health behaviours are vital but often these are heavily dependent on social context and hence working to tackle social inequality and provide maternity care tailored to individual need is likely to be just as important as trying to directly alter behaviour.

Originality/value

Pregnancy and the postnatal period present an opportunity to improve maternal health and have a positive effect on future child health. Greater investment is required in this antenatal period of life.

Details

Journal of Children's Services, vol. 9 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-6660

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 10 June 2014

Vivette Glover and Jane Barlow

Foetal programming is one of the key mechanisms by which physical and social adversity is biologically embedded during pregnancy. While early interest in such programming focused…

Abstract

Purpose

Foetal programming is one of the key mechanisms by which physical and social adversity is biologically embedded during pregnancy. While early interest in such programming focused on the long-term impact of the mother's nutritional state on the child's later physical health, more recent research has identified an increased risk of psychopathology in children of women who have experienced stress, anxiety and depression during pregnancy. The purpose of this paper is to examine the literature addressing the impact of stress in pregnancy and the implications for practice.

Design/methodology/approach

An overview of the literature has been provided.

Findings

Both anxiety and depression in pregnancy are common, with a prevalence in the region of 20 per cent. Exposure in pregnancy to anxiety, depression and stress from a range of sources (e.g. bereavement, relationship problems, external disasters and war), is associated with a range of physical (e.g. congenital malformations, reduced birthweight and gestational age), neurodevelopmental, cognitive, and emotional and behavioural (e.g. ADHD, conduct disorder) problems. The magnitude is significant, with the attributable risk of childhood behaviour problems due to prenatal stress being between 10 and 15 per cent, and the variance in cognitive development due to prenatal stress being around 17 per cent. A range of methods of intervening are effective in improving both maternal anxiety and depression, and in the longer term should improve outcomes for the infant and child.

Research limitations/implications

This research highlights the importance of intervening to support the psychological wellbeing of pregnant women to improve outcomes for infants and children, and points to the need for further research into innovative ways of working, particularly with high-risk groups of pregnant women.

Originality/value

The paper provides an update of earlier overviews.

Details

Journal of Children's Services, vol. 9 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-6660

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 10 June 2014

Carolyn Summerbell, Helen Moore and Claire O’Malley

– The purpose of this paper is to review the evidence base for effective public health interventions which aim to improve the diet of children aged zero to three years.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to review the evidence base for effective public health interventions which aim to improve the diet of children aged zero to three years.

Design/methodology/approach

General review.

Findings

Key approaches and components of effective interventions include: repeated tasting, parental modelling, use of rewards, moderate restriction of “unhealthy” foods alongside an increase in portion sizes of fruits and vegetables, culturally appropriate messages, culturally acceptable health care provider, sufficient intensity of intervention, and an intervention which targets parental self-efficacy and modelling. Interventions which provide home visits (rather than require visits to a GP surgery or local community centre) financial incentives and/or mobile phone reminders may increase retention, particularly for some individuals. Recruiting mothers into programmes whilst they are pregnant may improve recruitment and retention rates.

Originality/value

Allows for key public health interventions, approaches and components to be explored and identified. This will ensure that there is guidance to inform the development of new interventions for this age group and more importantly recommend that those components which are most successful be incorporated in policy and practice.

Details

Journal of Children's Services, vol. 9 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-6660

Keywords

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