Exploring the experience and practices of midwives discussing decreased fetal movements with women in pregnancy

Dillon, P.L., Nagle, C., and Flenady, V. (2013) Exploring the experience and practices of midwives discussing decreased fetal movements with women in pregnancy. Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health, 49 (S2). p. 128.

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Background: Australian and New Zealand Stillbirth Alliance (ANZSA) clinical practice guidelines recommend that all women are given verbal and written information on normal fetal movements and made aware of the importance of reporting decreased fetal movements (DFM). This study explores midwives’ knowledge, practice and attitudes regarding communicating to women regarding DFM following guideline implementation.

Method: Between August-September, 2012, a survey was distributed to midwives providing pregnancy care at Barwon Health, Victoria. Items included 5 point Likert scale for agreement with statements and 4 point Likert scale for frequency of practices, open text responses and demo-graphic details.

Results: Response rate was 49% (42/85). Verbal information on normal fetal movements was consistently provided by 14 midwives (33%) and written information by 2 midwives (5%). There was considerable variation regarding the definition of DFM and the advice provided to women experiencing DFM, including to drink cold liquid (n =22), eat (n =10) and palpate abdomen (n =7). Where women reporting DFM 83% (n =35) midwives agreed women should be seen within 12 hours and 91% (n =38) agreed women presenting with DFM should have fundal height measured. Midwives advised women concerned about DFM to wait at least 24 hours before review ‘some of the time’ (n =42) and 43% (n =18) agreed with the use of a kick chart (not recommended). Half of the responders (n =21) were aware of internal guidelines on DFM and 5% (n =2) for ANZSA guidelines.

Conclusions: Providing women with the recently released ANZSA brochure on decreased fetal movements is recommended to support verbal information. Professional development for midwifery staff may align practice with best evidence and improve pregnancy outcomes.

Item ID: 51245
Item Type: Article (Abstract)
ISSN: 1440-1754
Additional Information:

This poster abstract was presented at the 17th Annual Congress of the Perinatal Society of Australia and New Zealand (PSANZ), held in Adelaide, SA, 14-17 April 2013.

Date Deposited: 23 Oct 2017 05:11
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1110 Nursing > 111006 Midwifery @ 100%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9205 Specific Population Health (excl. Indigenous Health) > 920507 Womens Health @ 100%
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