'Every pregnant woman needs a midwife'--the experiences of HIV affected women in maternity care

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TITLE: 'Every pregnant woman needs a midwife'-the experiences of HIV affected women in Northern Ireland.

OBJECTIVE: to explore HIV positive women's experiences of pregnancy and maternity care, with a focus on their interactions with midwives.

DESIGN: a prospective qualitative study.

SETTING: regional HIV unit in Northern Ireland.

PARTICIPANTS: 22 interviews were conducted with 10 women at different stages of their reproductive trajectories.

FINDINGS: the pervasive presence of HIV related stigma threatened the women's experience of pregnancy and care. The key staff attributes that facilitated a positive experience were knowledge and experience, empathy and understanding of their unique needs and continuity of care.

KEY CONCLUSIONS: pregnancy in the context of HIV, whilst offering a much needed sense of normality, also increases woman's sense of anxiety and vulnerability and therefore the need for supportive interventions that affirm normality is intensified. A maternity team approach, with a focus on providing 'balanced care' could meet all of the woman and child's medical needs, whilst also emphasising the normalcy of pregnancy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)132-8
Number of pages7
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2013

Bibliographical note

Crown Copyright © 2012. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


  • Adult
  • Attitude of Health Personnel
  • Emotional Intelligence
  • Female
  • HIV
  • HIV Infections
  • HIV Seropositivity
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Humans
  • Maternal Health Services
  • Nurse Midwives
  • Nurse-Patient Relations
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications, Infectious
  • Qualitative Research


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