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‘Baby Coming – You Ready?’ An audacious innovation to perinatal social and emotional wellbeing assessment screening and supportive management for vulnerable parents-to-be

Kotz, J. and Robinson, M. (2018) ‘Baby Coming – You Ready?’ An audacious innovation to perinatal social and emotional wellbeing assessment screening and supportive management for vulnerable parents-to-be. Women and Birth, 31 . S3.

Link to Published Version: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.wombi.2018.08.018
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Abstract

Introduction: ‘Baby Coming – You Ready?’ is an audacious innovation to perinatal social and emotional wellbeing assessment screening and supportive management for vulnerable parents-to-be.

This digitalised screening rubric, called ‘Baby Coming-You Ready?’, uses touch screen images to provide an engaging culturally safe solution to the many barriers to effective screening and primary prevention currently faced by both non-Indigenous service providers and Indigenous women. It has been developed through a strong collaboration between Aboriginal Australians, midwives, child health nurses and researchers through the participatory action research (PAR) called Kalyakool Moort- Always Family.

Indigenous Australians are historically cautious, acute observers and frequently over-ridden in research and health care processes. Embarking on PAR and adopting an Aboriginal world view in the research process has seen a curious interface of cultures that is both complex and challenging. However, it has been critical to its success.

Aim: This paper describes this process which resulted in a solid effective research structure, a commitment to working from the Aboriginal world view and a strong research translational pathway. It will explain the significance of strong community commitment and the extensive organisational and community collaboration.

Method: A desire based approach to narrative inquiry through an Indigenous lens is a key feature of this process. Through analysis of the current context of perinatal mental health screening among Indigenous mothers and fathers, the perspectives of three separate target groups has been included: that of Indigenous women, Indigenous fathers and health professionals involved in routine perinatal care. Data triangulation of results included a state-wide online questionnaires and thematic analysis of semi-structured interviews with health professionals, ‘yarning’ sessions with Indigenous women and fathers, extensive analysis of current screening surveillance data through a cultural lens and metasynthesis of current literature.

Findings: Emergent from this process is the touch screen image driven screening and assessment ‘rubric’ called ‘Baby Coming-You Ready?’. It embodies four key elements: good engagement, a sense of safety, a trusting relationship, and the capacity to embrace the strengths in the Aboriginal and Torres Strait peoples cultural viewpoint which is central to family/community centred-care. This goes far beyond current woman/family-centred care. Culture is fluid, traditional roles/expectations are changing and many Indigenous Australian fathers are becoming increasingly vulnerable as a result. Therefore developing a parallel version of the ‘Baby Coming-You Ready? rubric for fathers was considered vital.

Conclusion: Widespread community acceptance to this innovative approach to perinatal mental health screening and primary prevention is now possible as the ‘Baby Coming-You Ready?’ rubric is being piloted across the health care sector.

Item Type: Journal Article
Publisher: Elsevier
Copyright: © 2018 Published by Elsevier Ltd.
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/42864
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