The Challenges of Providing Postpartum Education in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania: Narratives of Nurse-Midwives and Obstetricians

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Abstract

Postpartum education can save lives of mothers and babies in developing countries, and the World Health Organization recommends all mothers receive three postpartum consultations. More information is needed to better understand how postpartum education is delivered and ultimately improves postpartum health outcomes. The purpose of this qualitative study was to examine how postpartum care was delivered in three postnatal hospital clinics in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. Semistructured interviews with 10 nurse-midwives and three obstetricians were conducted. Feminist poststructuralism guided the research process. Postpartum education was seen to be an urgent matter; there was a lack of supportive resources and infrastructure in the hospital clinics, and nurse-midwives and obstetricians had to negotiate conflicting health and traditional discourses using various strategies. Nurse-midwives and obstetricians are well positioned to deliver life-saving postpartum education; however, improvements are required including increased number of nurse-midwives and obstetricians.

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