Original Research - Special Collection: Centenary Edition

Towards community-based nursing: Mothers’ experiences caring for their preterm infants in an informal settlement, Gauteng

Alida S. du Plessis-Faurie, Marie Poggenpoel, Chris P.H. Myburgh, Wanda O. Jacobs
Health SA Gesondheid | Vol 25 | a1437 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hsag.v25i0.1437 | © 2020 Alida S. du Plessis-Faurie, Marie Poggenpoel, Chris P.H. Myburgh, Wanda O. Jacobs | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 29 February 2020 | Published: 11 December 2020

About the author(s)

Alida S. du Plessis-Faurie, Department of Nursing Sciences, Faculty of Health, University of Johannesburg, Johannesburg, South Africa
Marie Poggenpoel, Department of Nursing Sciences, Faculty of Health, University of Johannesburg, Johannesburg, South Africa
Chris P.H. Myburgh, Department of Nursing Sciences, Faculty of Health, University of Johannesburg, Johannesburg, South Africa
Wanda O. Jacobs, Department of Nursing Sciences, Faculty of Health, University of Johannesburg, Johannesburg, South Africa


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Abstract

Background: Pregnant women who experience preterm labour rush to public hospitals closest to the informal settlement in which they reside. Preterm infants are discharged when they reach a certain weight. Mothers take their preterm infants to their homes inside the informal settlements. Yet, preterm infants have special needs and require specific management. Research confirmed that nurses working in community clinics near informal settlements are unaware of the challenges faced by such mothers. Community nurses are at the heart of nursing, they work closest to the community and have a distinct opportunity to provide contextual, community-based care and support to these mothers, to promote good health and prevent diseases.

Aim: This article aims to enhance community nurses’ insight about the mothers’ experiences in caring for their preterm infants post-hospitalisation.

Setting: The study was conducted in an informal settlement in Midvaal, Gauteng.

Methods: A qualitative, exploratory, descriptive and contextual research design was used. In-depth, phenomenological interviews were conducted with 10 purposefully sampled mothers to explore their experiences in caring for their preterm infants in an informal settlement. Data were analysed using Giorgi’s coding method. Ethical approval was received from the University of Johannesburg. Measures were applied to ensure trustworthiness.

Results: Three themes emerged: mothers experienced intrapersonal responses, interpersonal responses and numerous physical challenges in taking care of their preterm infants.

Conclusion: Study findings revealed that mothers experienced several responses in caring for their preterm infants. Sharing their experiences can enhance community clinic nurses’ insight to provide contextual health education.


Keywords

Experiences; Mothers; Preterm infants; Informal settlement; Community clinic nurses

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