Understanding service delivery to new and expectant fathers by health and welfare professionals

Christopher Maylea

    Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis

    225 Downloads (Pure)


    This dissertation aims to discover the kind of services health and welfare professionals deliver to new and expectant fathers; why new and expectant fathers receive minimum services or are excluded from some services; and to suggest strategies to improve service delivery to them. A grounded theory approach was used to conduct and analyse 35 interviews with new and expectant fathers, their partners, health and welfare professionals and managers in the Richmond-Tweed area of northern NSW, Australia. The analysis suggests that current research and practice is dominated by medical and feminist ontology, both of which exclude fathers from service and engaging in pregnancy, birth and early parenting experiences. Further, it identifies several barriers emanating from cultural constructs and perceptions, work and family contexts, relationships and transitions, both in accessing fathers and in providing support to them. It argues that the best way for health and welfare professionals to improve service delivery to new and expectant fathers is to focus on the whole new and expectant family and accordingly, it suggests some possible strategies. The study has implications for both policy and practice to improve services to new and expectant families.
    Original languageEnglish
    QualificationDoctor of Social Work
    Awarding Institution
    • Charles Sturt University
    • Pawar, Manohar, Principal Supervisor
    Award date01 May 2013
    Place of PublicationAustralia
    Publication statusPublished - 2013


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