The support needs of mothers of high-risk premature infants

McKim, Edna Margaret (1988) The support needs of mothers of high-risk premature infants. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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    Available under License - The author retains copyright ownership and moral rights in this thesis. Neither the thesis nor substantial extracts from it may be printed or otherwise reproduced without the author's permission.
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Abstract

The purpose of this research was to evaluate the needs of a specific geographically-based sample of mothers of high- risk premature infants in order to provide the groundwork for an improved teaching and support programme. -- The objectives for this study were (a) to determine the kinds of information that mothers of premature high-risk infants received prior to the infants discharge from the hospital; (b) the kinds of information that the mothers felt they needed, but did not receive; (c) the types of support sought by the mothers in the early post-discharge period; (d) whether the support received by the mothers was felt to-be adequate; and (e) to determine what type of support, was needed where support provided was perceived to be inadequate. -- The subjects were 56 primiparous and multiparous mothers of high-risk premature infants. Data were collected by survey questionnaire and analyzed using descriptive and inferential statistics. -- This study found that mothers of high-risk premature infants received information similar to that given to-mothers of healthy, full-term newborns. The mothers wanted, but did not receive information on the colicky, fussy, or crying infant, noisy breathing, spitting-up, infant behaviour, and infant illness. Primiparous and mothers attending prenatal classes had an increased need for information. -- Mothers who reported that they needed more information and did not receive it, were more anxious and less confident while the more experienced mothers were less anxious. A difference was found in the amount of information the mothers received from the various hospitals. The primary source of support for the mothers in this study was the husband/boyfriend, and secondly, the mother's mother. Multiparous mothers appeared not to receive the same amount of support as the primiparous mothers. -- Many of the mothers found the first week after the infant's discharge from hospital difficult. The only variable that appeared to have any bearing on the difficult first week was the prompt visit of the public health nurse. The findings from this study suggest that more information needs to be made available to mothers of high-risk premature infants prior to their baby's discharge, and confirms the need for a structured teaching programme. Other needs indicated by the mothers were for a place to call for assistance, a booklet on post-discharge premature infant care and a visit from the public health nurse during the first post-discharge week. This study emphasized the importance of an assessment of the mother’s need for support and the quality of support available to her prior to the infant's discharge and the necessity of hospital and community nurses working together to support mothers of high-risk premature infants.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/882
Item ID: 882
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 141-152
Department(s): Nursing, School of
Date: 1988
Date Type: Submission
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Premature infants; Parenting--Study and teaching

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