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The Development and Initial Validation of the Perinatal Mental Health Awareness Scale in Student Midwives

Martin, Colin R. and Jomeen, Julie and Jarrett, Patricia (2017) The Development and Initial Validation of the Perinatal Mental Health Awareness Scale in Student Midwives. Journal of Midwifery & Reproductive Health, 5 (4). pp. 1021-1031. ISSN 2345-4792

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.22038/JMRH.2017.9251

Abstract

Background & aim: Perinatal mental health problems have been demonstrated to impact upon maternal, and fetal/child outcomes. Despite the global evidence and a policy-driven responsibility for identification of these problems, research demonstrates that student midwives/midwives lack knowledge and confidence to assess, identify, and manage them. A similar context is evident for learning disabilities, despite the holistic care philosophy of midwifery. A brief assessment tool to identify knowledge and confidence defecits and strengths within a holistic care framework could support curriculum development. This study sought to develop a Perinatal Mental Health Awareness scale and evaluate its psychometric properties in student midwives. Methods: We employed a cross-sectional and exploratory instrument development and evaluation design to determine the measurement veracity of the new scale. Results: The scale demonstrated good psychometric properties, revealing three subscales mapping onto (i) mental health symptoms, (ii) physical/medical issues and (iii) learning disability. Results indicated a clear differentiation in scores across the subscales, indicating comparative deficits in mental health domains. Conclusion: Our findings facilitate confidence in the psychometric robustness of the measure. The scale enables student midwives to assess and compare different domains of midwifery practice, in line with a holistic model of midwifery care. A focus on physical health in midwifery education appears to disadvantage knowledge and confidence for managing mental health problems in a midwifery context. This valuable finding highlights the potential need for curriculum rebalancing. The measure offers the opportunity to assess and develop curriculum/training provision and monitor the effectiveness of subsequent curricular developments.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Assessment, Curriculum, Holistic, Learning disability, Perinatal mental health, Psychometric
Divisions: ?? BucksNewUniversity ??
Depositing User: RED Unit Admin
Date Deposited: 04 Sep 2017 16:10
Last Modified: 11 Dec 2017 19:28
URI: http://bucks.collections.crest.ac.uk/id/eprint/16075

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