Reflection: Study days

Posted on: 20/06/2011

It’s Monday and, having been on a study/work related trip to Manchester, I have so much to ponder about.  I’ll see how far I get.

We had an amazing study day. This was a chance for me to get up-to-date with new procedures in maternity services or changes in NHS policy, as well as just getting my head back in the game; it’s been four years since I first did my compulsory study in this area and, my brain being rather sieve-like, I’ve forgotten a lot of it.  We had a quiz to look over and, whilst I knew at least half of it, the fact that there were several questions I’d never even heard of was rather intimidating.  Clearly I need to get more familiar with a midwifery textbook at some point…

Image courtesy of

What took up most of the day was a detailed look at a partogram. (What’s a partogram? It’s the document that the midwife fills in during labour to keep a record of what’s going on.) It was absolutely fascinating. I hadn’t considered it in so much detail before, but it very soon became clear that every single little mark a midwife makes on such a chart has so much significance. Our tutor for the day is well known within the NCT for her gentle, approachable expertise, and I soaked it up like a sponge.

We also looked at some problems people can have during pregnancy – pre-eclampsia, morbid obesity and gestational diabetes – and looked at how it can affect their hopes and plans for labour and birth. How realistic is it for a morbidly obese woman to have a home water birth?  Well, easier than one with pre-eclampsia, if she’s prepared to challenge the hospital’s normal practice.

What I got out of the day most, though, was not the top-up and refreshment of knowledge,  but a chance to talk to other antenatal teachers (though I didn’t meet a single other student). I chose this training because the subject is so fascinating, and to talk to others who are equally interested can lead to some amazing conversations.

The study day was six hours long, but for once I didn’t lose concentration – it was just too interesting. And in the breaks, we’d talk about it even more. Amazing stuff.

More on the second day next time – watch this space.


1 Response to "Reflection: Study days"

[…] I’m confused by the third highest entry – partogram.  I only mentioned it once after a study day I went to back in June. Partograms are amazing , but their light seems to be hidden under some bush […]

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