Debbie Singh, Mary Newburn, Nina Smith, Meg Wiggins
British Journal of Midwifery, Vol. 10, Iss. 1, 10 Jan 2002, pp 54 - 58
Changing Childbirth (Department of Health, 1993a) emphasised the importance of providing accessible information during pregnancy. Five years after Changing Childbirth became government policy, a self-complete questionnaire was sent to a randomly selected sample of women to assess how well their maternity information needs were being met. This article focuses on the information needs of first-time mothers during pregnancy. Findings suggest that demand for information is increasing. Over two thirds of the 702 first-time mothers surveyed said that they wanted to know Ďa great dealí about pregnancy and birth and all had some unmet information needs. Young mothers, ethnic minorities, and women from lower socioeconomic groups showed the greatest desire for more information. All maternity services should have an information and support strategy. As part of this midwives should review how well they are meeting womenís individual information needs and should take action to improve womenís access to reliable information and opportunities to talk over issues during pregnancy.
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