Optimizing Midwives’ Uptake of a Provincial Perinatal Data System: Lines of Thinking

Caroline Paquet, RM, BHSc, MSc; Damien Contandriopoulos, PhD; and Régis Blais, PhD

In Quebec, the perinatal data available is fragmentary, comes from a number of different databases that are not well integrated, and offers little information regarding the quality of care and services provided by midwives. In 2012, the Ministry of Health and Social Services (MSSS) asked midwives to contribute to the information system on users of local community services centers (I-CLSC). The I-CLSC system is, above all, an administrative monitoring tool; however, it makes it possible to document certain aspects of midwifery practice. Using literature from the fields of knowledge transfer and modification of clinical practices, this article aims to explore under which conditions and to what extent the I-CLSC system could help document midwifery practice. Given the context and the nature of the I-CLSC tool, the success of its uptake by midwives involves the simultaneous reinforcement of its acceptance by midwives, and the provision of support while they use it, so that the data collected is reliable and solid. Training and feedback activities constitute promising avenues in terms of attaining these goals. Literature suggests that, without adequate support, there is a high risk that data fed into the I-CLSC system by midwives will be unreliable. If that is the case, the individual time and effort invested in this system by midwives are unlikely to be cost-effective for either the midwives themselves or midwifery in general.

midwives, integrated health information system, knowledge transfer

This article has been peer reviewed.


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