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  4. Decision making during labour in midwifery-led units: A conversation analytic study

Jan

18

Monday

Decision making during labour in midwifery-led units: A conversation analytic study

12.30pm

Seminars

Public

This event will take place online via Zoom.

The Centre for Maternal and Child Health at the School of Health Science, City, University of London welcomes Clare Jackson, Ellen Annandale and Sian Beynon-Jones to discuss findings from their study of interactional practices of decision-making in recordings of communication between midwives, labouring women and their birth partners during labour as part of the research seminar series.

In this paper we present an overview of some key findings from an NIHR funded study which sought to explore interactional practices of decision-making that take place during labour in midwifery-led units (MLUs).

An understanding of how decisions are made in practice is important because women’s retrospective accounts of birth show that greater involvement in decision-making is associated with greater postnatal satisfaction and well-being, and decreased anxiety. Nonetheless, little is known about how decisions unfold in real time through interactions between health professionals, women and their birth partners.

Accordingly, our study drew on video and audio recordings of labour and birth in order to illustrate who initiates decisions, how they are made, and the extent to which women are involved in them. We explore decision-making using Conversation Analysis, which is the leading method for exploring talk in interaction and enables a focus on how decisions are achieved through the micro-level of everyday practice.

The paper illustrates:

  • i) that decision-making is primarily initiated by midwives
  • ii) that there is a range of ways in which decisions can be initiated which facilitate women’s involvement to a greater or lesser extent
  • iii) that the topic of a decision impacts on midwives’ interaction with women and the extent to which women are involved in that decision.

Funded by NIHR: National Institute for Health Research

About the speakers

Clare Jackson is a Senior Lecturer in Sociology at the University of York. She uses conversation analysis to study how decision-making is accomplished in healthcare interactions.

Ellen Annandale is a Professor in Sociology at the University of York. Her research focuses mainly upon gender and health, feminist theory, and the sociology of organisations and professions.

Siân Beynon-Jones is a Senior Lecturer in Sociology at the University of York. Situated at the intersection between medical sociology and feminist Science and Technology Studies, her research focuses on reproduction and temporality.

Please bring your own lunch and refreshments to this virtual seminar 🙂

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When and where

12.30pm - 1.30pmMonday 18th January 2021