IFGH 2012: Program of Midwives Training for HIV and Syphilis Prevention in Pregnant Women Treated in Public Hospitals in Buenos Aires Province, Argentina

January 27, 2012

Authors: Insúa, Patricia1; Vazquez, Mariana2; Zalazar, Virginia2; Campos, Fernanda2; Vazquez, Angeles2; Leach, Melisa2

Author Affiliations: 1Faculty of Psychology Universidad del Pais Vasco, Spain; 2Fundacion Huesped, Argentina

Option 2– Lessons from the field; project and programme evaluations; and syntheses or analyses

Presented as –Poster (unable to attend)

Issues:

Over the past two years, a baseline study was carried out among pregnant women in order to identify risk factors and gaps related to MTCT prevention. Our study has shown that women are not practicing preventative STI methods and do not have access to STI preventative information. Most women only attend SRH appointments because of pregnancy, which leaves their midwives as one of the few links to the health system. Due to this, midwives should strengthen their communication skills to meet situations of vulnerability and to fill in STI information gaps.

Description:

UPV provided technical support, research and training in the development and execution of communication programs for health workers. Fundacion Huesped’s professionals were trained by UPV to implement the research based workshops to midwives. The 5 day workshop covered STI counseling, preventative strategies among couples, gender violence, and alcohol and drug abuse. The workshop was implemented with 4 themes in mind. These themes included communication styles, skills of communication, missed opportunities and gender perspective.

Lessons Learned:

Violence and the use of alcohol and drugs are two topics that are usually hidden, but greatly affect the relationship a woman will have with her partner and health professional. This being said, it is necessary that a woman feel accepted and comfortable in order to discuss confidential issues, such as STI prevention, with her health professional.

Next Steps:

The present intervention-research project was carried out among 30 midwives in two municipalities of the Buenos Aires province. The evaluation results show that midwives were better able to recognize the women’s needs, include male partners and improve the quality of antenatal care after their communication training. In 2012 we expect to continue this program in other municipalities of the Buenos Aires Province.

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