The aim of this research is threefold:
1. To validate the London Measure of Unplanned Pregnancy in Chichewa for use in the Mchinji district of Malawi.
2. To investigate the relationships between pregnancy intention and maternal and neonatal health outcomes in the Mchinji district of Malawi and assess the likely impact of meeting the unmet need for family planning.
3. To describe the experience of and access and attitudes to postpartum family planning through focus groups in the Mchinji district of Malawi.
Primary expected outcomes
A Chichewa version of the London Measure of Unplanned Pregnancy
Analysis of the relationships between pregnancy intention and maternal mental health
Analysis of the relationships between pregnancy intention and pregnancy outcomes including miscarriage, stillbirth, low birth weight and neonatal deaths.
Insight into issues are postnatal family planning in Mchinji District
Description of pregnancy intention in Mchinji District and who is at risk of having an unplanned pregnancy.
Investigation of the natural history of maternal mental health from antenatal to postnatal
Comparison of traditional measures of pregnancy intention with the London Measure of Unplanned Pregnancy.
Understanding of the changes in reported intention for the same pregnancy over time and what this is associated with.
Collection of data on a range of women’s health issues, such as domestic violence, quality of life, food security, support and control to allow further investigation of these issues.
Women from across half of Mchinji District who became pregnant within the recruitment period (March-December 2013) were eligible to participate. Girls aged under 15 were not included due to concerns regarding informed consent. Over 4000 women were recruited.
The primary outcomes are collected at follow-up at least one month after the baby was born. Some women have also been followed up at 6 and 12 months and this will continue until the end of the data collection period at the end of August 2014.
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The Chichewa London Measure of Unplanned Pregnancy (LMUP) was successfully validated in 2012. A paper on this has now been published in BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth, an open access, online journal and can be accessed here: http://www.biomedcentral.com/1471-2393/13/200.