Midwifery linked to lower odds of birth complications for low-income women

Issue: BCMJ, vol. 60 , No. 10 , December 2018 , Pages 507 News

Research from UBC and the University of Saskatchewan adds to the evidence in support of midwives as a safe option for prenatal care, especially for women who have low socioeconomic status.

The study, “Reduced prevalence of small-for-gestational-age and preterm birth for women of low socioeconomic position: A population-based cohort study comparing antenatal midwifery and physician models of care,” published in the British Medical Journal Open, found that low-income pregnant women who receive care from a midwife compared to a physician are less likely to go into early labor, to have a baby with a low birth weight, or to have a small-for-gestational age birth.

Midwives, general practitioners, and obstetricians each offer a different style of prenatal care that matches different women’s preferences and needs. Midwives tend to spend more time with their patients with a focus on the overall physical, emotional, and psychological well-being of mothers and their newborns, which benefits women who are more vulnerable.

For the study, researchers followed 57 872 women in BC who carried a single baby, had low- to moderate-risk pregnancies, and received medical insurance premium assistance sometime between 2005 and 2012. They used maternity, medical billing, and demographic data to investigate the odds of small-for-gestational age birth, preterm birth, and low birth weight for low-income women receiving care from a midwife, GP, or OB.

After controlling for differences such as age, previous pregnancies, where they lived, and pre-existing medical conditions, researchers found that low-income women who received prenatal care from a midwife had 29% lower odds of a small-for-gestational age birth compared to women who received care from a GP, and a 41% reduction compared to those who received care from an OB.

Authors of the study suggest the findings could help develop policies that make the service more accessible to low-income women, who might not be as aware of this option.

The study was coauthored by Daphne N. McRae, Patricia Janssen, Saraswathi Vedam, and Maureen Mayhew at the University of British Columbia, and Deborah Mpofu, Ulrich Teucher, and Nazeem Muhajarine at the University of Saskatchewan. It is available at https://bmjopen.bmj.com/content/8/10/e022220.

. Midwifery linked to lower odds of birth complications for low-income women. BCMJ, Vol. 60, No. 10, December, 2018, Page(s) 507 - News.



Above is the information needed to cite this article in your paper or presentation. The International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) recommends the following citation style, which is the now nearly universally accepted citation style for scientific papers:
Halpern SD, Ubel PA, Caplan AL, Marion DW, Palmer AM, Schiding JK, et al. Solid-organ transplantation in HIV-infected patients. N Engl J Med. 2002;347:284-7.

About the ICMJE and citation styles

The ICMJE is small group of editors of general medical journals who first met informally in Vancouver, British Columbia, in 1978 to establish guidelines for the format of manuscripts submitted to their journals. The group became known as the Vancouver Group. Its requirements for manuscripts, including formats for bibliographic references developed by the U.S. National Library of Medicine (NLM), were first published in 1979. The Vancouver Group expanded and evolved into the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE), which meets annually. The ICMJE created the Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing, and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals to help authors and editors create and distribute accurate, clear, easily accessible reports of biomedical studies.

An alternate version of ICMJE style is to additionally list the month an issue number, but since most journals use continuous pagination, the shorter form provides sufficient information to locate the reference. The NLM now lists all authors.

BCMJ standard citation style is a slight modification of the ICMJE/NLM style, as follows:

  • Only the first three authors are listed, followed by "et al."
  • There is no period after the journal name.
  • Page numbers are not abbreviated.


For more information on the ICMJE Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing, and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals, visit www.icmje.org

BCMJ Guidelines for Authors

Leave a Reply