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Refugee women in greece: – a qualitative study of their attitudes and experience in antenatal care

In the last decades Greece has been an asylum country for thousands of refugees, among them women in childbearing age. Purpose of the study: The aim of the present study was to examine whether refugee women, resettled in Greece, receive antenatal care and to explore possible factors that may influence their attitude towards maternal care. Method and material : Twenty-six refugee women from five non-governmental organizations for refugees, one refugee network, three refugee communities and one reception centre took part in the study. It was a qualitative study. As method of data collection was used semi-structured interviews and as method of data analysis was used the latent content analysis. Results: Analysis showed that refugee women enter antenatal care in the first trimester of their pregnancies, but they may miss from one to many appointments due to the language and financial barrier, the unfamiliarity with the national health system, and the women’s view of pregnancy as a natural event. Conclusions: In order to improve antenatal practice for refugee women, interpreters and bilingual health workers is suggested to be employed, staffs to be trained on refugee issues, while information material in other languages needs to be published. Social services and refugee networks have to co-operate closer. Finally, continuity of antenatal care and availability of female doctors in public hospitals is also suggested to facilitate the access to antenatal care for refugee women.

Author(s): Iliadi Panagiota

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