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Key Maternity Care Stakeholders' Views on Midwives' Professional Autonomy.

Vermeulen, J, Buyl, R, Luyben, A, Fleming, V and Fobelets, M (2023) Key Maternity Care Stakeholders' Views on Midwives' Professional Autonomy. Healthcare, 11 (9). ISSN 2227-9032

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Advancement towards the professionalism of midwifery is closely linked to midwives' professional autonomy. Although the perspectives of Belgian midwives on their professional autonomy have been studied, the views of other maternity care stakeholders are a blind spot. The aim of this study, therefore, was to explore maternity care stakeholders' views on Belgian midwives' professional autonomy. A qualitative exploratory study was performed using focus group interviews. A heterogenous group of 27 maternity care stakeholders participated. The variation between midwives, with different levels of autonomy, was reported. The analysis of the data resulted in five themes: (1) The autonomous midwife is adequately educated and committed to continuous professional further education, (2) The autonomous midwife is competent, (3) The autonomous midwife is experienced, (4) The autonomous midwife assures safe and qualitative care, and (5) The autonomous midwife collaborates with all stakeholders in maternity care. A maternity collaborative framework, where all maternity care professionals respect each other's competences and autonomy, is crucial for providing safe and quality care. To achieve this, it is recommended to implement interprofessional education to establish strong foundations for interprofessional collaboration. Additionally, a regulatory body with supervisory powers can help ensure safe and quality care, while also supporting midwives' professional autonomy and professionalisation.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: autonomy; midwifery; midwifery autonomy; midwives; professional autonomy; professionalisation
Subjects: R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
R Medicine > RG Gynecology and obstetrics
Divisions: Nursing & Allied Health
Publisher: MDPI
SWORD Depositor: A Symplectic
Date Deposited: 15 May 2023 09:29
Last Modified: 15 May 2023 09:30
DOI or ID number: 10.3390/healthcare11091231
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/19495
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