Aim. This paper reports a study to investigate how satisfied Swedish women are with their antenatal care.
Background. Medical care is of high priority, but other aspects, such as psychosocial support are also important for women during pregnancy. Identifying women who are dissatisfied with their antenatal care could help us to improve this.
Methods. A national cohort of 2746 Swedish-speaking women completed a questionnaire in early pregnancy and at 2 months postpartum. The data were collected in 1999–2000.
Results. The majority of participants were satisfied with their antenatal care, but 23% were dissatisfied with the emotional aspects and 18% with the medical aspects. The strongest predictors of dissatisfaction were women's opinions that midwives had not been supportive and had not paid attention to their partners’ needs. If the women believed that there were not enough antenatal visits or had met three or more midwives during their antenatal visits, they were more likely to be dissatisfied with the care received. Those with low levels of education were more likely to be dissatisfied with both medical and emotional aspects of antenatal care.
Conclusions. Midwives working in antenatal care should support pregnant women and their partners in a professional and friendly way in order to increase satisfaction with care. Organizing teamwork with no more than two midwives taking care of a woman during a normal pregnancy could make women feel more supported by their midwives.