Obstetric Providers' Perceptions Regarding Text Messaging as a Strategy Concerning Postpartum Depression

Obstetric Providers' Perceptions Regarding Text Messaging as a Strategy Concerning Postpartum Depression

Author: 
Alla Williamson
Program of study: 
D.H.A.
Abstract: 
Postpartum depression (PPD) remains largely neglected. The growth of mobile technology with texting capabilities is an exciting technological innovation with great potential for managing PPD. Considering the serious consequences of PPD, there was an urgent need for this research that conducted an in-depth exploration of the experiences and perspectives of obstetric health care providers, with the goal of improving management of PPD care and the well-being of new mothers. There was little information on the role of text messaging regarding PPD from the perspective of health care professionals. The purpose of this study was to explore and describe the perceptions of the obstetric nurses and obstetricians at a high risk obstetric clinic in Arizona regarding text messaging as a strategy associated with education, prevention, and early detection of PPD symptoms for postpartum women. A qualitative phenomenological design with the Q methodological approach was used, and a purposive sample of 10 obstetric health care providers (obstetricians and obstetric nurses) was recruited. The results were analyzed and interpreted. The analysis was developed and revealed two core themes and nine subthemes concerning text messaging as a strategy. In this study, participants’ perceptions proposed a multifarious role for text messaging. Gathering obstetricians’ and obstetric nurses’ perceptions regarding text messaging as a strategy can be helpful for developing appropriate and success-generating strategies and organizational policies. This study has the potential to improve health care leaders' capabilities to deliver evidence-based practices to postpartum women with PPD symptoms in a timely manner.
Dedication: 
I dedicate this dissertation to my daughter, Elizabeth, who always stood by me and dealt with all of my absences from many family occasions. Also, I dedicate this research to my mother, Tatiana, who bestowed on me a love for reading and respect for education and knowledge. Elizabeth and Tatiana both had faith in me, and more importantly, they helped me to build faith in myself.
Acknowledgements: 
In his guide, Azuma (2003) explained that: "Being a graduate student is like becoming all of the Seven Dwarves. In the beginning you're Dopey and Bashful. In the middle, you are usually sick (Sneezy), tired (Sleepy), and irritable (Grumpy). But at the end, they call you Doc, and then you're Happy." (Why get a Ph.D. section, para. 2) Indeed, obtaining a Doctoral Degree is a long and difficult journey. The DHA program was one of the most important and foundational experiences in my life; it has blazed the path to a new, more interesting, and challenging future. I want to acknowledge everyone who made it possible for me to successfully complete the Ph.D. program. I want to express my gratitude to Dr. White, my mentor, for the time he devoted to me all the way through the completion of the research and the dissertation writing process. Dr. White was encouraging, supportive, and offered priceless and straight-forward advice. Dr. Kadrie and Dr. Petersen-Incorvaia, my committee members, also generously offered their time to enhance my study. I thank them for their contribution and for their valuable and genial support. I also want to acknowledge the many friends, colleagues, peers, teachers, and personnel of the University of Phoenix who assisted me, supported me, and believed that I could do it