n African Journal for Physical Health Education, Recreation and Dance - A reflection on the psychosocial component of midwifery education in South Africa

Supplement 2
  • ISSN : 1117-4315


In order for midwives to provide holistic care to pregnant women, the women's psychological, social, spiritual and physical needs should be taken into consideration. Furthermore, the midwife should acknowledge that pregnancy and birth does not affect the woman as an individual but also her family. The purpose of the study was to explore the academic and theoretical content of psychosocial care designed to regulate midwifery practice, and midwifery education regarding psychosocial assessment and care of women during pregnancy and childbirth. A mixed-method approach was used for the study. Purposive sampling was done. Data collection was carried out through the review of the South African Nursing Council's (SANC) midwifery regulations, the midwifery curriculum of three Gauteng Nursing Colleges, midwifery learning guides, clinical tools used for midwifery education and tests and examinations written by students. Data were also obtained from midwives through self-administered questionnaires. In-depth interviews were conducted with midwifery experts to establish their perception of psychosocial care content in midwifery education. Data analysis generally included summary statistics and Chronbach's alpha coefficients of internal consistency. Thematic analysis of qualitative data occurred concurrently with data collection. The results of the study indicated that psychosocial care reflects at the SANC level in a broad perspective as "holistic care". A gap exists between midwifery regulation and midwifery education as the content covered on psychosocial care in midwifery education is limited.

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