Systematic review of heath care interventions to improve outcomes for women with disability and their family during pregnancy, birth and postnatal period.
Malouf R., Redshaw M., Kurinczuk JJ., Gray R.
BACKGROUND: Health care providers are often unfamiliar with the needs of women with disability. Moreover maternity and postnatal services may not be specifically tailored to the needs of women with disability and their families. We conducted a systematic review to determine the effectiveness of healthcare interventions to improve outcomes for pregnant and postnatal women with disability and for their families. METHODS: Studies on pregnant and postnatal women with disability and their families which evaluated the effectiveness of an intervention using a design that met the criteria used by the Cochrane Effective Practice and Organization of Care group were eligible for inclusion in this review. A comprehensive search strategy was carried using eleven electronic databases. No restriction on date or language was applied. Included studies were assessed for quality and their results summarized and tabulated. RESULTS: Only three studies fully met the inclusion criteria. All were published after 1990, and conducted as small single-centre randomized controlled trials. The studies were heterogeneous and not comparable. Therefore the main finding of this review was the lack of published research on the effectiveness of healthcare interventions to improve outcomes for pregnant women with disability and their families. CONCLUSIONS: More research is required to evaluate healthcare interventions to improve outcomes for pregnant women with disability and their families.