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Toward the realization of a safe society where women can become pregnant and give birth without anxiety

2014.01.08

Unit Name:
Women’s Health and Maternity Nursing
Unit representative:
Professor Yoko Emori, Faculty of Medicine

Unit members:
5 (5 faculty members, no postdoctoral fellow, none from other organizations)

Key words:
women’s health, perinatal nursing, sexuality, mother-child relationship, maternal and child health

URL:

 

Creating an environment where the next generation of young adult women can become pregnant and give birth without anxiety is a very important factor in any society, especially in contemporary Japanese society, facing an aging population and declining birthrate. A research unit “Women’s health and maternity nursing” has been striving to tackle women’s health issues and identify nursing methods, with an aim to create an environment where newborns are loved by all and can grow up healthily.

Risks of pregnancy and childbirth

Pregnancy and childbirth are some of the most special moments in our lives (Figure 1). However, at the same time, pregnancy and childbirth have risks associated with health and the socioeconomic status (SES: A term that describes an individual’s socioeconomic status based on education, occupation, income, and work).

Figure 1 : Pregnancy and childbirth are supposed to be some of the happiest moments in our lives.

Figure 1 : Pregnancy and childbirth are supposed to be some of the happiest moments in our lives.


Have you ever heard of “deliveries by women receiving no prenatal care”? All pregnant women are advised to receive regular government-subsidized check-ups approximately 14 times throughout the course of pregnancy. However, occasionally, there are some women who give birth with little or no prenatal care. Such “deliveries by women receiving no prenatal care” are considered to influence not only mother-child health, but also mother-child relationships postnatally (Figure 2).
Figure 2 : Relationships between deliveries by women receiving no prenatal care and health/socioeconomic risks

Figure 2 : Relationships between deliveries by women receiving no prenatal care and health/socioeconomic risks

Backgrounds of “deliveries by women receiving no prenatal care”

We conducted research on deliveries by women receiving no prenatal care, their SES, and the influence on mother-child health and feelings toward their unborn babies. Specifically, we conducted interviews involving mothers who experienced deliveries without receiving prenatal care, and modified our past studies. As the results, in addition to financial problems, problems related to sex education for women, such as not knowing about getting pregnant, were identified as the reasons for delivering without receiving prenatal care (late or no check-ups) (Figure 3).

Figure 3 : Reasons for deliveries without receiving prenatal care (excerpts)

Figure 3 : Reasons for deliveries without receiving prenatal care (excerpts)


To provide education and information on pregnancy for not only pregnant women, but also young non-pregnant women, the presence of nurses, who have many opportunities to encounter pregnant women from the early stages of pregnancy to postnatal discharge, is important. We consider that the involvement of nurses in support throughout pregnancy and the postpartum period contributes to preventing women from receiving no prenatal care and realizing long-term postpartum support.

Social contributions and achievements

● Reform of the maternal and child health system to create an environment where women can become pregnant and give birth without anxiety
● A proposal for education and a new way of providing information for pregnant women
● Sex education for adolescents and support for peer group activities

(Interviewed on October 17, 2013)


Research Administration/Management Office at U Tsukuba TEL 029-853-4434