Miscarriage represents a traumatic event for many women, and it may result in the development of long- and short- term psychological difficulties such as depression, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder. To date, there is a lack of robust evidence exploring women’s perceptions of factors impacting their emotional wellbeing, in particular, how best to support women who experience miscarriage in hospital settings. This study aims to address this gap by exploring the emotional needs and experiences of women who attend hospital facilities due to miscarriage in Northern Ireland.
The study adopts a sequential mixed-methods approach informed by two complementary frameworks: 1) the Medical Research Council’s Framework for the Development and Evaluation of Complex Interventions and 2) the Intervention Mapping (IM) approach to the development of health promotion interventions.
The research involves a scoping review of the international literature, an online survey of a minimum of 150 women who have experienced miscarriage in the last five years, and semi-structured interviews with 20 women and 10 health professionals in Northern Ireland.
My research is DfE funded.
What is your ideal Research outcome?
The study will provide considerations for health professionals on how to best support women who experience miscarriage in hospital settings, and recommendations for researchers designing interventions to help meet women’s emotional needs.
Dr Áine Aventin, Professor Mark Tomlinson and Dr Gary Mitchell
Why did you choose this PhD and why at Queen’s?
I moved to Belfast from Italy in 2012 to complete a Master’s in Health Communication at the University of Ulster. Sometime after, I decided to change my career path and I trained as a nurse at Queen’s University Belfast. Once graduated, I moved to London to work at King’s College Foundation Trust.
I have always planned to do a PhD after working clinically for a couple of years and when the opportunity came, I jumped straight into it! I decided to move back to Belfast and study at Queen’s because of its reputation both nationally and globally and its excellence in the research field.
I feel very privileged to be a doctoral student, fully funded, at Queen’s.
How have you been supported at Queen’s?
Networking is quite important in academia and I feel that I am given this opportunity at Queen’s by attending different workshop and seminars.
In what ways have you developed at Queen’s?
I feel that every day I am growing more and more as a researcher by engaging with different people and attending training sessions. I have an amazing supervisory team who are supporting me through each step of the journey.
I feel that being able to be in a doctoral student in Queen’s is not only contributing to my professional but also to my personal growth.
Can you describe the postgraduate community in the School and at Queen’s?
I find the postgraduate community at Queen’s stimulating and being part of it is an amazing opportunity to interact with fellow students and also provides the opportunity to exchange ideas and opinions.
Where do you hope your PhD will lead?
I hope that my current study will lead me to receive further funding to continue exploring how to best support women who experience miscarriage in hospital settings.