Presentation Information

Rhea Dempsey

Birth Debriefing: The How and Why at the Bedside

  • Speaker: Rhea Dempsey , TPTC, CBE, Grad. Dip. Counselling.
  • Presentation Type:
  • Duration: 60 Mins
  • Credits:
Abstract:

Making meaning through telling stories appears part of our deep human DNA. Sharing birth stories honours this capacity. Birth debriefing however honours a more urgent therapeutic need. When we understand that the reported prevalence of birth trauma ranges from 33 to 45 percent, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) affects between 1.5 to 6 percent of birthing women, we understand the need for birth debriefing.

A 2018 international review on ‘what matters to women during childbirth’ found that most women – wanted a physiological labour and birth; a healthy baby; practical and emotional support from birth companions, and competent, reassuring, kind clinical staff; if intervention was needed or wanted, women wanted to retain a sense of personal achievement and control through active decision-making. 2019 Australian research amplifies these findings, reporting that women repeatedly referred to their preference to avoid intervention, but described being unable to do so in hospital. So before addressing birth debriefing, it’s necessary to understand the context within which birth debriefing becomes necessary.

In this presentation I will explore common pathways to birth trauma – necessary interventions and medical emergencies; unmet expectations of care and the impact of any previous vulnerabilities experienced by the birthing woman. Then we will explore the structural changes required to address the issue of birth trauma. Finally, we will explore the ‘how and why of birth debriefing at the bedside’.

Live Presentation Schedule

Oct 15, 2019