Many women go through some form of pregnancy jitters. Even our homegirl Kim Kardashian West experienced anxiety about being pregnant. The whole preggo thing can be daunting business, and women need to talk about it and feel supported while they put their body through the ringer for nine-plus months. But just imagine: What if there was a club you could join to get prenatal care and share your pregnancy anxieties with women in the same boat? Researchers at the Yale School of Public Health recently conducted a study to find out if this kind of prenatal group might be beneficial for moms-to-be.
The study took place in 14 health centers in NYC. It compared outcomes of more than 1,000 women between the ages of 14 and 21, and from disadvantaged areas, who were receiving prenatal care. Women at similar points in their pregnancies were placed in groups of 8-12 for sessions that offered education, skill building and the opportunity to share their experiences. The study found that the higher the number of group visits attended, the lower the rates of poor birth outcomes.
The researchers say that further studies are needed to identify specifically why these group sessions yielded better outcomes than typical prenatal care. Was it the additional education, the built-in social support or something else? Other considerations include the cost effectiveness of group prenatal care and whether these kinds of clubs could benefit other types of patients.
In the meantime, researchers and health providers are getting the ball in motion to find a sustainable approach to this type of healthcare. They’re currently piloting a program called Expect With Me. So stay tuned, moms to-be: you may even meet your next BFF or wingwoman while you’re getting your prenatal care.
Would you join other expectant mothers to receive your prenatal care? Tell us what you think @britandco.