Excess gestational weight gain: An exploration of midwives’ views, attitudes and practice

Willcox, Jane C., Campbell, Karen J., van der Pligt, Paige, Hoban, Elizabeth, Pidd, Deborah and Wilkinson, Shelley Ann (2012) Excess gestational weight gain: An exploration of midwives’ views, attitudes and practice. BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth, 12 102.1-102.10. doi:10.1186/1471-2393-12-102

Author Willcox, Jane C.
Campbell, Karen J.
van der Pligt, Paige
Hoban, Elizabeth
Pidd, Deborah
Wilkinson, Shelley Ann
Title Excess gestational weight gain: An exploration of midwives’ views, attitudes and practice
Journal name BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1471-2393
Publication date 2012-01-01
Year available 2012
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1186/1471-2393-12-102
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 12
Start page 102.1
End page 102.10
Total pages 11
Place of publication London, United Kingdom
Publisher BioMed Central
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Background: Excess gestational weight gain (GWG) can affect the immediate and long term health outcomes of mother and infant. Understanding health providers' views, attitudes and practices around GWG is crucial to assist in the development of practical, time efficient and cost effective ways of supporting health providers to promote healthy GWGs. This study aimed to explore midwives' views, attitudes and approaches to the assessment, management and promotion of healthy GWG and to investigate their views on optimal interventions.

Midwives working in antenatal care were recruited from one rural and one urban Australian maternity hospital employing purposive sampling strategies to assess a range of practice areas. Face-to-face interviews were conducted with 15 experienced midwives using an interview guide and all interviews were digitally recorded, transcribed verbatim and analysed thematically.

Results: Midwives interviewed exhibited a range of views, attitudes and practices related to GWG. Three dominant themes emerged. Overall GWG was given low priority for midwives working in the antenatal care service in both hospitals. In addition, the midwives were deeply concerned for the physical and psychological health of pregnant women and worried about perceived negative impacts of discussion about weight and related interventions with women. Finally, the midwives saw themselves as central in providing lifestyle behaviour education to pregnant women and identified opportunities for support to promote healthy GWG.

Conclusions: The findings indicate that planning and implementation of healthy GWG interventions are likely to be challenging because the factors impacting on midwives' engagement in the GWG arena are varied and complex. This study provides insights for guideline and intervention development for the promotion of healthy GWG.
Keyword Gestational weight gain
Qualitative research
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Non-UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: School of Pharmacy Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 23 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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Created: Mon, 18 Nov 2013, 00:59:45 EST by Shelley Wilkinson on behalf of School of Pharmacy