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A mixed methods approach to exploring individual, organisational and environmental factors influencing the decision making process of pregnant women considering a vaginal birth after caesarean section


Project Description

Used appropriately, caesarean section (CS) can be lifesaving; however it is also associated with increased morbidity. Women with uncomplicated pregnancies who choose CS rather than vaginal birth are at risk of cardiac arrest, chronic pain and/or hysterectomy, while infants are more likely to be admitted to intensive care [1]. One of the greatest contributors to the overall CS rate is elective repeat CS. To help reduce this rate, promoting vaginal birth after caesarean section (VBAC) is offered and seen as the safest way forward for women who have had one prior CS for a non-repeating cause and who have no other complications [1]. However, women may be more likely to choose a repeat elective CS if their health care providers lack the skills and confidence in supporting VBAC [2]. Other factors include the culture of the birth environment, particularly in an obstetric-led unit where hierarchy of health professionals and competing philosophies of birth have an impact [3]. National statistics [1] show the majority of women (75%) who attempt a VBAC will achieve a vaginal birth. This figure is reflected regionally across Wessex. However, the uptake varies considerably from 65% to 43% across the NHS Trusts in Wessex. The reason for this is not fully understood.

How to apply:

Applications are made via our website using the Apply Online button below. If you have an enquiry about this project please contact us via the Email NOW button below, however your application will only be processed once you have submitted an application form as opposed to emailing your CV to us.

Candidates for funded PhD studentship must demonstrate outstanding qualities and be motivated to complete a PhD in 4 years.

The PhD Studentships are open to UK, EU and international students. Candidates for a PhD Studentship should demonstrate outstanding qualities and be motivated to complete a PhD in 4 years and must demonstrate:

• A 1st class honours degree and/or a relevant Master’s degree with distinction or equivalent. If English is not your first language you’ll need IELTS (Academic) score of 6.5 minimum (with a minimum 6.0 in each component).

Additional requirements: To apply for this Studentship you MUST be a midwife registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (UK) https://www.nmc.org.uk/ . Please note interviews will be held at the University Hospitals Southampton NHS Foundation Trust in May and that your clinical placement time (2 days a week) will be spent at UHS.

Funding Notes

Funded candidates will receive a maintenance grant of £14,777 per year to contribute towards living expenses during the course of your research, as well as a fee waiver for 48 months

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