'Mind you, there's no anaesthetist on the road': Women's experiences of labouring en route

Jennie Dietsch, Pamela Shackleton, Carmel Davies, Margaret Alston, Margaret McLeod

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

27 Citations (Scopus)
8 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Introduction: The aim of this article was to learn from women in rural New South Wales (NSW) Australia, their experiences of labouring en route to birth in a centralised maternity unit. Methods: This qualitative study was exploratory and descriptive. It was part of a larger project that explored women's experiences when they birthed away from their rural communities. Participants were recruited from communities all over rural NSW where a maternity unit had closed. Forty-two female participants and three of their male partners shared their stories of 73 labours and births. This article draws on data collected during in-depth interviews with 12 participants and one partner who shared their experiences of labouring en route to a centralised maternity service. Interviews were audiotaped and transcribed verbatim for the purpose of thematic analysis. Exemplars, using the participants' own words and highlighting story are identified as a tool used for data synthesis and presentation. Results: Two themes were identified. These relate to the way the risk of dangerous road travel is ignored in obstetric risk discourse, and the deprivations experienced when women labour en route. An unexpected finding was the positive nature of one woman's experience of birthing by the side of the road. Conclusions: Many participants questioned why they needed to risk unsafe road travel when their preference was to labour and birth in their local communities with a midwife.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-10
Number of pages10
JournalRural and Remote Health
Volume10
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2010

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road
New South Wales
Parturition
labor
experience
Interviews
South Australia
travel
Midwifery
Rural Population
midwife
Obstetrics
obstetrics
interview
deprivation
qualitative method
rural community
community
Anesthetists
discourse

Cite this

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title = "'Mind you, there's no anaesthetist on the road': Women's experiences of labouring en route",
abstract = "Introduction: The aim of this article was to learn from women in rural New South Wales (NSW) Australia, their experiences of labouring en route to birth in a centralised maternity unit. Methods: This qualitative study was exploratory and descriptive. It was part of a larger project that explored women's experiences when they birthed away from their rural communities. Participants were recruited from communities all over rural NSW where a maternity unit had closed. Forty-two female participants and three of their male partners shared their stories of 73 labours and births. This article draws on data collected during in-depth interviews with 12 participants and one partner who shared their experiences of labouring en route to a centralised maternity service. Interviews were audiotaped and transcribed verbatim for the purpose of thematic analysis. Exemplars, using the participants' own words and highlighting story are identified as a tool used for data synthesis and presentation. Results: Two themes were identified. These relate to the way the risk of dangerous road travel is ignored in obstetric risk discourse, and the deprivations experienced when women labour en route. An unexpected finding was the positive nature of one woman's experience of birthing by the side of the road. Conclusions: Many participants questioned why they needed to risk unsafe road travel when their preference was to labour and birth in their local communities with a midwife.",
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'Mind you, there's no anaesthetist on the road' : Women's experiences of labouring en route. / Dietsch, Jennie; Shackleton, Pamela; Davies, Carmel; Alston, Margaret; McLeod, Margaret.

In: Rural and Remote Health, Vol. 10, No. 2, 06.2010, p. 1-10.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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AU - Davies, Carmel

AU - Alston, Margaret

AU - McLeod, Margaret

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