Ms Laura Goodwin
Location:Room 702a, EastGate House, 35-43 Newport Road, Cardiff CF24 0AB
'The Midwife-Mother Relationship; A Focus on Reciprocal Interactions with Migrant Pakistani Women Living in the UK'
High numbers of UK immigrants have a visible impact on maternity services; in 2011 a massive 25.5% of births in England and Wales were to mothers born outside of the UK (Births in England and Wales by Parents’ Country of Birth, ONS 2012c). The most recent CMACE report (Saving Mothers’ Lives, 2011) shows significantly higher maternal mortality rates in England for minority ethnic than White women. Between 2006-2008, the estimated mortality rate for White women was 8.5 deaths per 100,000 maternities; for Black women this rate was more than tripled at 28.05, and was also significantly higher for both Asian and Chinese women; 12.24 and 15.11 respectively (CMACE, 2011a).
Recent criticism of the quality of midwifery care in the UK (Healthcare Commission, 2003, 2008) has led to an influx of papers exploring the impacts of issues such as birthing environments and continuity of care (Hunter, 2006). Little research, however, has been conducted on the relational issues between midwife and mother. Hunter (2006) suggests that a balanced reciprocal relationship between midwife and mother (equal give and take) is needed not only for happiness in the midwife-mother relationship, but the promotion of better maternity care.
The aim of the current research is to explore relationships between UK midwives and migrant Pakistani women in the South Wales region. A series of interviews and observations will be conducted with practising UK midwives and migrant Pakistani women in UK maternity care. Results will expand the relatively small research base which considers the factors behind ethnic inequalities in maternity outcome, and could potentially indicate ways to improve communication and emotional support between UK midwives and ethnic minority women (specifically migrant Pakistani women). These improvements could have an extremely important impact on patient safety, and ultimately contribute to the lowering of maternal mortality in the UK.