Delphi Birth Professional Study: Factors needed for Pre- and Perinatal Parenting Programs

Christine L McKee, Peta Berenice Stapleton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


Using a three-round hybrid Delphi methodology, the current study utilized a panel of “expert” birth professionals (n=20 after three rounds) to examine content and logistical factors that may be most effective for inclusion in the design, development, and delivery of pre- and perinatal (PPN) parenting programs of the 21st century. The purpose was to attain consensus on 235 items generated from literature and the panelists. Consensus per item was deemed achieved where 75% [dis]agreement was reached, which occurred for 157 (66.81%) items. Most notable were factors that may impact the development of prenates during gestation and post-birth that pregnant couples may benefit form learning about, content, barriers to fathers attending, parent cohort who may best benefit from attending, effective methods and locations of program delivery, and who is best qualified to facilitate programs. Consensus was not attained when the factors of program timing and length were considered. Numerous limitations relating to the study design were identified and future research could focus on creating PPN parenting programs that are flexible in design to suit individual needs of mothers, fathers, and couples. The effectiveness of future PPN parenting programs could be measured using randomized clinical trials that include waitlists, control groups, and contrast treatments, for comparison.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages35
JournalThe Journal of Prenatal and Perinatal Psychology and Health
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2018


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