Effects of an educational bereavement program on health care professionals' perceptions of perinatal loss

J Contin Educ Nurs. Jul-Aug 2002;33(4):180-6. doi: 10.3928/0022-0124-20020701-10.


Background: The purpose of this study was to examine the differences in health care professionals' perceptions of perinatal loss situations before and after an educational program on perinatal bereavement.

Method: A quasi-experimental design was used in a pretest and posttest format.

Results: Scores were significantly higher (p = .000) on each of the posttest vignettes. Overall scores were lowest for the miscarriage pretest, whereas scores for the pretest vignettes for the stillbirth and neonatal loss were similar. A similar pattern occurred in the posttest vignette scores.

Conclusion: Health care professionals' perceptions of the emotional care needs of families experiencing perinatal loss were significantly increased after an educational program. The miscarriage vignette had the largest change score and the lowest mean scores on the pretest and posttest, which indicates professionals do not view miscarriage as significant a loss as stillbirth and neonatal loss.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Abortion, Induced*
  • Abortion, Spontaneous*
  • Adult
  • Bereavement*
  • Education, Continuing*
  • Female
  • Fetal Death*
  • Health Personnel / education*
  • Humans
  • Ohio
  • Pregnancy
  • Professional-Patient Relations