Factors related to women's experiences and satisfaction with prenatal care
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Prenatal care provides numerous maternal and infant health benefits, and it is more likely to be effective if women begin receiving care early and continue their care throughout pregnancy. Patient satisfaction is recognized as a predictor of adherence to medical recommendations and utilization of care. The purpose of this study was to identify the factors associated with pregnant women’s satisfaction with prenatal care in Winnipeg. A cross-sectional, descriptive, correlational design was used to examine the relationships between expectations, interpersonal processes of care, the quality of prenatal care, personal characteristics, and the type of provider with overall satisfaction, as well as with satisfaction with each of the following dimensions: information, provider care, staff interest, and system characteristics. Donabedian’s (2003) structure, process, and outcome framework guided the study. A convenience sample of 216 pregnant women from diverse socioeconomic backgrounds was surveyed using self-administered questionnaires in late third trimester; providers were obstetricians (58.2%), midwives (15.9%), family physicians (13.9%), nurse practitioners (4.8%), or mixed (7.2%). Multiple linear regression analyses were used to identify predictors of satisfaction. Perceived quality of care was a significant predictor of overall satisfaction and all the satisfaction subscales. The provider’s interpersonal style was a significant predictor in all but one of the satisfaction measures, satisfaction with information, where patient-centered decision-making was significant. The type of prenatal care provider (midwife) was a predictor of satisfaction with system characteristics. Expectations for prenatal care were unrelated to satisfaction. Although most of the participants in this study were satisfied with prenatal care, 5-20% reported dissatisfaction with various dimensions. The findings of this study have implications for future research, practice, education and policy. Important information on structure and process was generated, with the potential to improve the experience and satisfaction of women receiving prenatal care.