An assessment of decision making in midwifery practice: A case study of selected hospitals in Oyo State, Nigeria | Abstract
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An assessment of decision making in midwifery practice: A case study of selected hospitals in Oyo State, Nigeria

Author(s): Oyediji E.F, Amosu A M, Ojo E F ,Degun AM

This cross-sectional non-experimental study was carried out to examine decision making abilities of practicing midwives in some selected hospitals in Ibadan, Oyo state, Nigeria. The study population consisted of 500 randomly selected nurse/midwifes working in 3 public and 2 privately owned randomly selected hospitals. A self-developed pretested questionnaire was employed in collecting data which were later analysed using the SPSS version 12.0. Results revealed that among the respondents, 45% were 40-50 years old, 38% between ages 35-39 years while 17% were of ages 20-34 years. Majority, 91% were married, 7% were single while the remaining 2% were widows. Out of the 500 respondents, 53% were senior nursing officers, 22% were principal nursing officers while the remaining 25% were assistant chief nursing officers. Concerning the length of their service in midwifery practice, 53% of the respondents had spent between 11–20 years, 28% between 21–30 years, and 14% between 6–10 years with 5% having spent below 5 years in midwifery practice. Also, among the respondents 68% of them had spent 5 years in their present position, 24%, 6-10 years while 8% had held their positions for upward of 11 years and above. About, 88% of the respondents agreed that midwives are involved with three types of interventions, that is dependent, independent and inter-dependent nursing/midwifery functions; another 88% agreed that midwives’ decisions are often drawn from experience based on routine procedures while 64% agreed that often decisions are made and implemented by midwives before the facts have been gathered. The result also indicated that the entire 4 hypothesis drawn were accepted. This shows that midwives are actually taking decisions but the decisions are not authentic, assertive and defensible. It is concluded that midwives need assistance in form of continuous education programmes and financial support from colleagues and government, in order to be decision makers in their professional specialty.