Prenatal Nutrition in Team-Based Care: A Qualitative Investigation of Current Practices and Opportunities for Optimization of Care

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Coady, Martina
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University of Guelph

This thesis describes the nature of prenatal nutrition care currently provided by Family Health Teams (FHTs) and Community Health Centres (CHCs) in Ontario, from the perspectives of healthcare providers, and identifies opportunities for optimization of team-based prenatal nutrition care. In total, 73 healthcare providers working in FHTs and CHCs participated in ten, one-hour, interdisciplinary focus groups. A semi-structured interview guide was used and thematic analysis was conducted. The structure of each participating team was unique, however it was consistently found that healthcare providers of various disciplines take responsibility for providing prenatal nutrition care. The provisions of diet and excess weight-related education and counselling were minimal. Two great challenges in providing optimal care involved: 1) Inconsistency in the term “high risk pregnancy” and 2) Imbalance between drivers and barriers to discussing excess gestational weight. Data highlighted providers’ dreams and barriers, and identified strategies to optimize prenatal nutrition care in Ontario.

This study described the current process of prenatal nutrition care delivered in Family Health Teams and Community Health Centres, and revealed opportunities and strategies to optimize this care for the future.
Dietetics, Interdisciplinary Communication, Ontario, Patient Care Team, Family Health Team, Community Health Centre, Preventative Medicine, Health Promotion, Primary Health Care, Nutrition, Pregnancy, Prenatal, Pregnant, Dietitian