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Experiences of maternity care during the COVID-19 pandemic in the North of England

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Tomasina Stacey, Zoe Darwin, Alice Keely, Anna Smith, Dasa Farmer, Kate Heighway

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)516-523
Number of pages8
JournalBritish Journal of Midwifery
Volume29
Issue number9
DOIs
Accepted/In press12 May 2021
Published2 Sep 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright: © 2021 MA Healthcare Ltd. All rights reserved.

King's Authors

Abstract

Background During 2020, UK maternity services made changes to service delivery in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Aims To explore service users' and their partners' experiences of maternity services in the North of England during the COVID-19 pandemic. Methods Respondents (n=606) completed a co-produced survey during August 2020. Data were analysed using descriptive statistics and content analysis. Findings Five major categories were identified: Valuing support from health professionals, feeling lost in and let down by the system, the impact of restrictions to partners and others, virtual contact is not the same as in-person contact, and the need for emotional and psychological wellbeing support. Conclusion The changes implemented may have compromised mental health and wellbeing in a critical period of vulnerability. Bringing stakeholders together can maximise learning from the emergency measures, to better inform future service provision. Work is needed to better hear from minoritised groups and ensure they are not further marginalised by changes.

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