Mothers’ perceptions of family centred care in neonatal intensive care units

Article English OPEN
Finlayson, Kenneth William ; Dixon, Annie ; Smith, Chris ; Dykes, Fiona Clare ; Flacking, Renee (2014)

Objective\ud \ud To explore mothers’ perceptions of family centred care (FCC) in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) in England.\ud Design\ud \ud The qualitative experiences of 12 mothers from three NICUs in the UK were elicited using individual interviews. A thematic network analysis was conducted on the transcribed interviews\ud Main outcome measures\ud \ud A central global theme supported by a number of organizing themes were developed reflecting the views of the mothers and their experiences of FCC.\ud Results\ud \ud A global theme of “Finding My Place” was identified, supported by six organizing themes: Mothering in Limbo; Deference to the Experts; Anxious Surveillance; Muted Relations, Power Struggles and Consistently Inconsistent. Mothers experienced a state of liminality and were acutely sensitive to power struggles, awkward relationships and inconsistencies in care. To try to maintain their equilibrium and protect their baby they formed deferential relationships with health professionals and remained in a state of anxious surveillance.\ud Conclusions\ud \ud This study illustrates that despite the rhetoric around the practice of FCC in NICUs, there was little in the mother's narratives to support this. It is of the utmost importance to minimize the consequences of the liminal experience, to improve staff–mother interactions and to facilitate mothers’ opportunities to be primary caregivers.
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