Experiences of pregnant mothers using a social media based antenatal support service during the COVID-19 lockdown in the UK : findings from a user survey

Chatwin, JR ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-3091-9117, Butler, D, Jones, J, James, L, Choucri, Lesley and McCarthy, Rose 2021, 'Experiences of pregnant mothers using a social media based antenatal support service during the COVID-19 lockdown in the UK : findings from a user survey' , BMJ Open, 11 (1) , e040649.

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Objectives: The COVID-19 pandemic has seen unprecedented restrictions on face-to-face healthcare encounters. This has led to an increase in the use of online healthcare resources by service users. Pregnant women have always been a group particularly motivated to seek out information online. The objective of this study was to explore the experiences of mothers who were using an existing National Health Service social media based antenatal support service during the early stages of the UK COVID-19 lockdown. Design: A short online survey with four closed questions (scale response) and one open-ended free-text question was given to pregnant women who were using the online service 3 weeks after the start of the UK lockdown. Descriptive statistics are used to present the closed question data. Thematic analysis was applied to the free-text responses. Results: 320 women were sent the survey. 156 completed it (49% response rate). Participants provided information relating to frequency of use, information access, relative level of antenatal care and ease of contact. 105 (66%) participants completed the open-ended free-text question. Key themes to emerge related to: (1) information provision and verification; (2) managing and reducing feelings of isolation; (3) service specific issues, including crisis adaptations; and (4) impact on routine care. Conclusions: The study suggests that that pregnant mothers found a social media based approach well positioned to provide antenatal care and support during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: ** Embargo end date: 15-01-2021 ** From BMJ via Jisc Publications Router ** Licence for this article starting on 15-01-2021: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ **Journal IDs: eissn 2044-6055 **Article IDs: publisher-id: bmjopen-2020-040649 **History: published_online 15-01-2021; published 01-2021; accepted 05-11-2020; rev-recd 14-10-2020; submitted 19-05-2020
Schools: Schools > School of Health and Society
Journal or Publication Title: BMJ Open
Publisher: BMJ Publishing Group
ISSN: 2044-6055
Related URLs:
Funders: Health Education England
SWORD Depositor: Publications Router
Depositing User: Publications Router
Date Deposited: 21 Jan 2021 09:43
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2022 06:35
URI: https://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/59383

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