A PRENATAL ASSESSMENT TOOL FOR MOTHERS AND FATHERS

Authors

  • Margaret E. Malnory R.N., B.S.N., M.S.N.

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    • Margaret E. Malnory received her B.S.N. and M.S.N. from the University of Wisconsin–Madison. She has been a staff nurse in a high-risk perinatal center. She has also held a joint appointment with Marquette University College of Nursing, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and St. Michael Hospital, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where she functioned as a perinatal Clinical Nurse Specialist. Currently she is the Department Director of the Family Centered Nursing Unit and Perinatal Clinical Nurse Specialist at Mount Sinai Medical Center, Milwaukee, Wisconsin.


Department Director, Family Centered Nursing Unit, Mount Sinai Medical Center, 950 North 12th Street, P.O. Box 342, Milwaukee, WI 53201.

ABSTRACT

A review of the literature supports the need to examine the development and psychologic needs of mothers and fathers during the pregnancy process. Since research evidence has shown that prenatal–infant attachment and the outcome of pregnancy may be influenced by these processes and their resolutions, there is a need to observe, interview, and record developmental patterns over the course of pregnancy. A systematic approach to assessment would make it possible to identify problematic areas and implement early intervention and education to facilitate the normal progress of pregnancy. A tool for the assessment of the mother's and father's developmental progress and psychologic needs during pregnancy was developed. For this purpose the tool is divided into four observation–interview periods during the pregnancy. These periods are 1) the first prenatal visit; 2) the second trimester, 20–24 weeks; 3) the early third trimester, 30–34 weeks; and 4) at term, 40 weeks. Each interview–observation period is subdivided into tasks, expected behaviors, and possible nursing interventions and educational aids. Content for these categories was selected from a review of the literature and observation of antepartal mothers and fathers in the clinic setting. Category content is meant to be progressive from one observation–interview period to the next period.

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