Qual-IFY – understanding the opinions of doctors towards fetal monitoring technology

Fiona Denison, Julia Lawton, Andrew Brown

Scientists funded by Tommy’s are developing new technology to monitor baby’s health during labour. In this project, our researchers are interviewing doctors to make sure that this new technology meets their needs. This will help to ensure any new technology gets adopted quickly, to help reduce the risks of labour for as many babies as possible.

Start: August 2018

End: August 2020

Why do we need this research?

If babies don’t get enough oxygen during labour, it can sometimes lead to brain damage and even death. Our current methods for monitoring a baby’s health during labour aren’t always effective.

Researchers funded by Tommy’s are developing new ways to check that a baby is getting enough oxygen. But without ‘buy-in’ from the people using it – doctors and midwives – this new technology might not be adopted quickly. We need to gather their opinions to make sure that new fetal monitoring equipment meets their needs.

What’s happening in this project?

In the Qual-IFY study, our researchers are interviewing doctors across the UK, to gather their opinions of fetal monitoring technology. The team will ask doctors about their experiences with current technology, such as cardiotocography machines which listen to the baby’s heartbeat through the mother’s womb. The team also want to understand their attitudes towards new technology for fetal monitoring, and understand what would persuade them to switch to using new methods.

What difference will this project make?

Researchers funded by Tommy’s are developing new ways to monitor the health of the baby during labour, which will reduce the risks of harm to babies. This project will provide our researchers with the information they need to make sure that their new fetal monitoring equipment addresses the needs of healthcare professionals. This will allow mothers and babies to benefit from new technology as soon as possible, reducing the chances of harm for babies during labour.

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