260391 Neighborhood context and pregnancy health: Perspectives from community-based doulas and mothers using Concept Mapping

Wednesday, October 31, 2012 : 10:30 AM - 10:50 AM

Dara Mendez, PhD, MPH , Department of Epidemiology, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
Jessica Burke, PhD, MHS , Department of Behavioral and Community Health Sciences, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
Jennifer Jones, MPH , Graduate School of Public Health, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
Cynthia Salter, MPH , Family Medicine, The Birth Circle Doula Agency, Pittsburgh, PA
Persistent racial disparities in adverse birth outcomes exist in the US. Researchers are increasingly exploring neighborhood residential contexts as fundamental determinants of the racial disparities in birth outcomes because individual risk factors do not completely explain the disparities. Still, the pathways between neighborhood context and adverse birth outcomes are not well understood. This study explored the conceptualization and relationship of neighborhood context with pregnancy health using a community-engaged approach and Concept Mapping, a participatory research method. The specific aims were to: 1) Identify the perceptions of neighborhood factors that influence maternal and infant health among community-based doulas and mothers; 2) Examine the relative importance of the neighborhood factors to preconception health, pregnancy health, postpartum health, and birth outcomes; 3) Determine how these neighborhood factors are related to preconception health, pregnancy health, postpartum health, and birth outcomes. Eighteen community-based doulas and mothers participated in the study. Participants generated a total of 79 unique neighborhood factors they believed to influence perinatal health at different stages (pre-pregnancy, pregnancy, post-partum, birth outcomes). Most of these factors were seen as equally important across the stages studied. Overall, most participants rated the various neighborhood items as either highly or moderately important for all stages. Results from this study contribute to future quantitative research and can be used to inform perinatal health interventions, including community doula programs. Additional details regarding the method and results (including visual diagrams (concept maps) of perceived similarities between neighborhood items and relative importance to perinatal health) are presented.

Learning Areas:
Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences
Systems thinking models (conceptual and theoretical models), applications related to public health

Learning Objectives:
Describe Concept Mapping as a tool for data collection and partnered research Discuss potential neighborhood factors perceived to influence pregnancy and birth Describe a community-based doula model

Keywords: Community-Based Partnership, Maternal and Child Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualitifed to be an abstract Author on the content presented because I was the principal investigator of the study. I was responsible for leading data collection, analysis, and write up.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.