Asking women to complete health and maternal histories for maternity records: A qualitative study

Authors: Aitchison, P.E., Entwistle, V.A., Van Teijlingen, E., Whitford, H.M., Davidson, T., Humphrey, T. and Tucker, J.S.

Journal: British Journal of Midwifery

Volume: 21

Issue: 11

Pages: 793-799

ISSN: 0969-4900

DOI: 10.12968/bjom.2013.21.11.793


Midwives usually document women's health and maternal histories during booking appointments. This qualitative study of use of the Scottish Woman Held Maternity Record (SWHMR) found some midwifery teams were asking women to document their own histories before these appointments. Pregnant women and midwives from these teams thought this could save midwives time, improve the accuracy of records and lead to more individually appropriate discussions. However, some women were disappointed that midwives had not fully discussed what they had written. Some midwives from teams that had not asked women to document their own histories were sceptical about the likely accuracy and usefulness of women's entries. If the potential advantages of asking women to document their own histories are to be safely realised, support must be available for women with limited English or reading and writing skills, and midwives must have time to review and discuss what women write. © 2013 MA Healthcare Ltd.

Source: Scopus