Experiences and needs of mothers of babies diagnosed with Hypoxic Ischaemic Encephalopathy due to birth asphyxia
Thesis (MPhil (Rehabilitation))--Stellenbosch University, 2016.
ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Background: Observations during physiotherapy treatment of babies with Hypoxic Ischaemic Encephalopathy (HIE) due to birth asphyxia suggested that the mothers of these babies lacked emotional and psychological support. The focus of the health-care team is on managing the medical and physical manifestations of the baby’s condition, and it appears as if the mother`s needs are neglected. Aim: to describe mothers’ experiences and needs after diagnosis of HIE due to asphyxia at birth, in order to contribute to recommendations for the provision of support for these and other mothers in the future Objectives: to explore the experiences, emotional responses and needs of participants after the diagnosis of HIE; to describe participants’ perceptions of the type of support they needed at birth and after the diagnosis of HIE and to describe participants’ perceptions of which sources and forms of support were available to them at birth and in the following months. Method: A qualitative, exploratory study design was implemented. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with four participants; recorded data was transcribed, checked and verified by means of follow-up telephone calls to all participants and thematic content analysis was applied to identify themes. Results: The findings indicated a need for emotional support, for information sharing and for improved communication between the health-care team and the mothers; as well as the importance of family and other support structures for these mothers. Conclusion: The findings could assist individual health care professionals to be aware of mothers’ needs and provide some of the required information and question opportunity during consultations. Furthermore, the findings could assist health-care teams in the neonatal units of hospitals to establish a support structure for mothers whose babies are diagnosed with HIE.
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