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ANTENATAL ASSESSMENT OF THE PSYCHOSOCIAL WELLBEING OF PREGNANT WOMEN: A CASE OF MPILO LOZIKEYI MATERNITY HOSPITAL, BULAWAYO, ZIMBABWE

Gwatiringa Calleta, Mavondo Greanious Alfred, Modiba Lebitsi Maud

Abstract: Introduction: Women have psychosocial challenges but perinatal interventions are not making much impact on their mental status hence the interventions need scaling up. This study involved measuring and analysing the extent to which levels of the psychosocial markers reflect effectiveness of the mental health interventions offered by midwives. Methods: The study was conducted at Mpilo Central Hospital Maternity Bulawayo, for the main reason that it receives women referrals from 5 out of the 10 provinces in the country with a total catchment of almost 50% of the country’s population. The maternity hospital has a full complement of all the five maternity units. A quantitative approach administrating a Quality-of-Life Enjoyment and Satisfaction Short form (Q-LES-SF) scale was used. The scale ranged from “very poor” to “very good” with “poor”, “fair”, “good” components in between was used to measure the psychosocial scores on a purposive sample of 300 women in the third trimester of pregnancy. The participants had attended at least three antenatal reviews where psychosocial interventions and mental health assessment, monitoring and evaluations are normally carried. The quantitative data was analysed using descriptive statistics on SPSS Version 23 package. Results: The Q-LES-Q-SF psychosocial scale which was revealed that women had psychosocial challenges without adequate mental health interventions to ameliorate these challenges. The study demonstrated a bimodal sample with peaks at the “Good” and “Poor” set points. The relationships of the psychosocial and satisfaction scores along the scale continuum showed that “Poor” (33%) Q-LES-Q-SF was higher, followed by “Good” (29%), followed by “Fair” (25%), followed by “Very Poor” and “Very Poor” and “Very Good” being equal (6.5%) in a normal distribution pattern. The likelihood of the demographic variables influencing the Q-LES-Q-F scale were not necessarily linked to the quality-of-life enjoyment and satisfaction of the expectant women during prenatal period. However, age, education level acquired and marital status showed a linearity towards the “Good” when individually rated against the Q-LES-Q-F. Discussion: The psychosocial scores were generally both poor and good indicating that perinatal interventions are needed are needed to making much impact on the mental and social wellbeing of women in the third trimester of pregnancy. The good to very good Q-LES-Q-F scores are a requirement in expectant mothers as this has a strong bearing on the wellbeing of the foetus and mother post parturition. Apparently, the need for scaling up psychosocial support, monitoring, evaluation and interventions to third trimester pregnant women by midwives cannot be overemphasized.
Keywords: Quality of Life / perinatal interventions / interventions need / making much impact / psychosocial scores / health interventions / Life Enjoyment / psychosocial challenges

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