Original Research

The utilisation of a midwifery obstetrical unit (mou) in a metropolitan area

M I Mashazi, S D Roos
Curationis | Vol 23, No 4 | a765 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/curationis.v23i4.765 | © 2000 M I Mashazi, S D Roos | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 27 September 2000 | Published: 27 September 2000

About the author(s)

M I Mashazi, Department of nursing science, RAU, South Africa
S D Roos, Department of nursing science, RAU, South Africa

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Abstract

In this study an explorative, descriptive design which is contextual in nature, is utilized. The objective of the study is three-fold: Firstly, to describe the opinions of members of the community about the reasons for the under-utilization of the Midwifery Obstetrical Unit (MOU); secondly, to describe the suggestions of the community for improving the utilization of the MOU and thirdly, to describe intervention strategies for community nurses to improve the utilization of the MOU. Data was collected by means of focus group interviews, and was analysed using Tesch’s (in Cresswell, 1994: 154-155) method of data analysis. Trustworthiness was ensured by using the method of Guba and Lincoln (1985).
The respondents were mothers who delivered their babies at the hospital, mothers who delivered their babies at the MOU, members of the Community Health Committee and MOU nurses.
Data was collected in two phases. Phase I dealt with the first question: What is your opinion about the reasons for the under-utilization of the MOU? Phase II dealt with the second question: What are your suggestions for improving the utilization of the MOU?
The four groups participated in Phase I as well as in Phase II, the reason being to involve the groups in identifying problems and finding solutions with which they would be comfortable, since it would be their ideas. This whole exercise was, however, carried out in line with the RDP principle of people driven approach or community involvement.
The investigation revealed that the community was not utilizing the MOU because of the following reasons:
• Negative attitudes of nurses.
• Lack of material and human resources.
• Poor safety and security measures.
• Lack of community involvement/participation.
The focus groups then identified the following suggestions for improving the utilization of the MOU:
• Change of attitudes by nurses towards the patients.
• Availability of material and human resources.
• Proper safety and security measures in the MOU.
• Community involvement/participation.
• Integration of health services.
Intervention strategies for community nurses to improve the utilization of the MOU were based on the literature as well as the suggestions made by the focus group respondents because the researcher found the suggestions to be realistic.

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