IMPLEMENTATION OF QUALITY IMPROVEMENT INBIRTH COMPANION POLICY AT GOVERNMENT MEDICAL COLLEGE AND HOSPITAL IN THE ‘NEW NORMAL’ OF COVID 19
European Journal of Molecular & Clinical Medicine,
2022, Volume 9, Issue 3, Pages 739-749
AbstractIntroduction: Assuring pregnant women have access to safe birth and continuum of antenatal and postnatal care during COVID assuming great importance, though it indeed is challenging. With the numerous existing challenges in implementation of birth companion policies, COVID has made it more difficult to implement birth companion policy which has drastically reduced to a zero. The Health Ministry of India has advised “birth companion” during childbirth in all the public health facilities. This step is one of the parts of low-cost intervention initiated by the government of India to meet the sustainable development goals. Methodology: The adapted birth companion policy was introduced to all pregnant women through antenatal classes. After admission to labour room, birth companion accompanied parturient throughout labour and provided supportive care. To implement birth companion policy and to test benefits of intervention, a quality improvement team was convened. A special care and extra efforts were taken to implement this policy even in COVID-19 pandemic.
Results: first PDSA cycle of 8weeks, birth companion support use remained low, with usage in only 20% of deliveries. From weeks 9 to 16 Improvements in adaptation of birth companion policy adherence was observed, with an average of 82% of parturient delivered received support of the birth companion of their choice. At the end of week 32, caesarean section rate decreased from 29.16 % to 26.09 %. With the birth companion of their choice and favourable birthing positions, there was decreased need of operative vaginal deliveries from 2.24% on week one to 1.8 % on week thirty-two.
Conclusion: Providing birth companion of choice is the right of every pregnant woman. The current COVID-19 Pandemic is no exception. The Pandemic must not disrupt every woman’s right to high quality, respectful maternity care. In ‘New Normal’ of COVID-19, everyone should strongly adhere to birth companion policy which will result in emotional, practical and health benefits of having birth companion of choice.
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