Preventing maternal mortality : - Nurses’ and midwives’ experiences from Tanzanian maternal health care services.
Background: Half a million women died during pregnancy or childbirth in 2005. Bleeding, infections, high blood pressure, obstructed labor, unsafe abortions, malaria and HIV/Aids were the main causes. Tanzania is a highly affected country with 460 maternal deaths per 100 000 live births. Nurses and midwives play an important role in preventing maternal mortality.
Purpose: The aim of this study was to explore and analyze nurses’ and midwives’ experiences of maternal mortality prevention on the Tanzanian island of Unguja.
Method: Interviews with nine nurses and midwifes from four different hospitals and health care facilities were conducted with the assistance of an interpreter. A structural analysis designed by Ricoeur was undertaken.
Results: The findings suggest that family planning, a more accessible health care, referral of severe cases, medical interventions, health education, community resource persons and involving fathers in maternal health care are preventive strategies that can reduce maternal mortality.
Conclusion: To further improve the quality of maternal mortality prevention further knowledge aboutindividual differences in learning from health education is needed. Involvement of all fathers in maternal health care should also be considered. Training of unskilled personnel is believed to improve early identification of life-threatening complications and thereby reduce maternal mortality.
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