Publicatie datum

How to improve newly qualified midwives' transition-into-practice. A Delphi study.

Kool, E., Schellevis, F.G., Jaarsma, D.A.C., Feijen-de Jong, E. How to improve newly qualified midwives' transition-into-practice. A Delphi study. Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare: 2023, 38, p. Art. nr. 100921.
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In the Netherlands, newly qualified midwives start work as registered midwives without any formal transition support. Research shows that newly qualified midwives do not feel sufficiently confident and competent in their work during the period following graduation. This could impact the quality of care provided by newly registered midwives. The aim of this study is to seek consensus with stakeholders concerning viable components of support for newly qualified midwives working in midwifery care in the Netherlands.

A Delphi study was conducted among maternity care stakeholders in the Netherlands. During two rounds, sixteen statements derived from a theoretical framework of organizational socialization theory and previous studies were assessed (round 1, n = 56; round 2, n = 52). Stakeholders (N = 61) were invited and completed an online questionnaire that included spaces for opinions and remarks.

Stakeholders agreed about an introductory support period for newly qualified midwives, involving performance feedback and regional-level backup from fellow midwives during shifts. They further agreed on the responsibilities of established professionals that they should support newcomers in practice and provide mentoring or group coaching, although they face organizational barriers for supporting newcomers.

Stakeholders found consensus upon several components of support at the workplace. In addition, a stable work environment seemed less important in their opinion while previous research suggests otherwise. Practice organisations need to improve the employment conditions and support for newly qualified midwives to ensure the quality of midwifery care is guaranteed.