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Women from diverse minority ethnic or religious backgrounds desire more infertility education and more culturally and personally sensitive fertility care

Gameiro, Sofia, El Refaie, Elisabeth, Bliesemann de Guevara, Berit and Payson, Alida 2019. Women from diverse minority ethnic or religious backgrounds desire more infertility education and more culturally and personally sensitive fertility care. Human Reproduction 34 (9) , pp. 1735-1745. 10.1093/humrep/dez156

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STUDY QUESTION What are the views, experiences and healthcare needs of infertile women from a minority ethnic or religious background living in Wales? SUMMARY ANSWER Women from ethnic and religious minority backgrounds consider that their communities have highly pronatalistic attitudes and stigmatize infertility, and express the need for more infertility education (for themselves and their communities), as well as more socio-culturally and interpersonally sensitive fertility care. WHAT IS ALREADY KNOWN Some people from minority ethnic or religious groups perceive pressure to conceive from their communities, experience social costs when they are unable to have children and stressful interactions with the fertility healthcare system while attempting to conceive. STUDY DESIGN, SIZE, DURATION This study was based on a one-day drawing workshop to collect visual (artwork produced by participants) and textual (all conversations and discussions during the workshop) data about the participants’ views and experiences of infertility and their fertility care needs. PARTICIPANTS/MATERIALS, SETTING, METHODS Participants were nine adult women with a minority ethnic or religious status living in Wales, UK, who were experiencing or had experienced infertility in the past. The workshop comprised five activities: (i) small and large group discussion of infertility-related drawings, (ii) lide-based lecture consisting of an introduction to the basics of drawing objects and people and (iii) thoughts and feelings, (iv) free drawing session and (v) group sharing. Audio recordings of the workshop were transcribed verbatim. Textual data was analysed with thematic analysis. Risk for bias was addressed via individual coding by two authors followed by joint presentation and discussion of results with the research team and participants. MAIN RESULTS AND THE ROLE OF CHANCE Forty-one themes were identified and grouped into eight distinct higher order themes. These themes described the emotional, relational and social burden of infertility experienced by women, which they perceived to result from their communities’ highly pronatalistic attitudes and stigmatization of infertility. Themes also captured women’s adaptive coping strategies and critical attitude towards pronatalist ideologies. Lastly, themes captured their overall positive evaluation of their fertility health care, their desire for more infertility education (for themselves and their communities) and for culturally competent and interpersonally sensitive care. LIMITATIONS, REASONS FOR CAUTION Our participants were a small, non-random sample recruited in collaboration with a local charity, which may mean that all participants were well integrated in their communities. Analysis focused on capturing commonalities in participants’ experiences and this may sometimes result in homogenising diverse experiences. WIDER IMPLICATIONS OF THE FINDINGS More education about the infertility experiences of minority ethnic and religious groups at the community and healthcare delivery level may translate into lessened negative attitudes towards infertility and more culturally competent care, which can be beneficial for women.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: English, Communication and Philosophy
Journalism, Media and Culture
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISSN: 0268-1161
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 16 July 2019
Date of Acceptance: 11 July 2019
Last Modified: 24 Nov 2020 22:00

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