Midwives' experience of using videoconferencing to support parents who were discharged early after childbirth

J Telemed Telecare. 2007;13(4):202-5. doi: 10.1258/135763307780908102.


Videoconferencing was used to support parents who were discharged early after childbirth. In a one-year pilot study, 23 videoconferences took place between midwives and parents at home. To ensure good picture quality, a high-speed, 10 Mbit/s broadband connection was used. We used a combination of quantitative and qualitative research methods to describe the participants' experience. Seven midwives with experience of supporting nine couples/new parents completed a questionnaire. The 20 responses (87%) showed that the main reason for contact was routine and the most frequent advice concerned breastfeeding. The quality of sound and picture were judged to be good and very good, respectively. The experience of communicating with the parents via videoconferencing was also investigated through semi-structured interviews. Analysis of the interviews revealed that videoconferencing was: easy to handle and useful for making assessments; a valuable and functional complement to usual practice; almost like a real-life encounter. The results suggest that videoconferencing may be a useful tool in postpartum care.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Attitude of Health Personnel
  • Communication
  • Delivery of Health Care / methods
  • Female
  • Home Care Services / organization & administration*
  • Humans
  • Midwifery*
  • Parents / education
  • Parents / psychology
  • Patient Discharge
  • Pilot Projects
  • Pregnancy
  • Telemedicine / methods
  • Videoconferencing / standards*