The potential uses of video-calling technology in early labour assessment and care
Telephone assessment during early labour, the current norm in many settings, has been found to be a source of dissatisfaction for women and may present challenges for midwives. The aim of this research is to explore the potential use of video-calling technology, such as Skype or FaceTime, to improve early labour assessment and to support women who labour at home during the early stage.
This project has been discussed with Network members at a number of our regular meetings. It has been invaluable to explore women's views of the potential benefits and difficulties of using video-calling in this context. Network members have also been consulted on study design.
As a first step we conducted an unfunded qualitative study to explore midwives views on the potential of video-calling as a method of assessing women in early labour. We collaborated with colleagues at two universities in the US to compare teh views of midwives in England compared to Mid-South and Northeast regions of the US.
We continue to develop this area of interest. The next stages of the research are being planned. If you are a Network member and you would like to be involved, please email us.
From discussions with Network members we have been able to address potential issues with using video-calling from the outset, helping us to design a study which more women will feel comfortable engaging with.
Spiby H, Faucher MA, Sands G, Roberts J and Kennedy HP, 2019. A qualitative study of midwives' perceptions on using video-calling in early labor. Birth 46(1): 105-112. Open access version available here.