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Midwifery Students' Knowledge and Perceptions of a Midwifery-Led Model of Care in North Karnataka, India.

OBJECTIVE: To assess the knowledge and perceptions of midwifery students regarding a midwifery-led model of care.

DESIGN: Cross-sectional study.

SETTING: A nursing college in North Karnataka, India. The midwifery-led care model is a relatively new concept in India. In 2018, guidelines on midwifery services in India were released during the Partners Forum held in New Delhi as the initiation of the model and with the support of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare. The initiative began with the training of nurse practitioners in midwifery and is progressing.

PARTICIPANTS: Final-year diploma and bachelor's degree students.

METHODS: Participants completed an online survey, which consisted of a 20-item questionnaire with a 5-point Likert scale to collect their knowledge and perceptions of the midwifery-led model of care. Descriptive statistics were used to describe the knowledge and perceptions of the students, including the mean, standard deviation, frequency, and percentage. Chi-square analysis and the Pearson's correlation coefficient were used to assess relationships between variables of interest.

RESULTS: Among the 165 participants, 85.5% (n = 141) had a poor level of knowledge of the midwifery-led care model, and only 14.5% (n = 24) showed average knowledge, with none possessing adequate knowledge. Notably, gender was significantly associated with knowledge (p < .05), with female participants demonstrating lower knowledge levels compared to male participants. A substantial portion (76.4%, n = 126) had a negative perception of the midwifery-led care model, 23.6% (n = 39) had a neutral perception, and none had a positive perception. There was no significant correlation between students' knowledge and perceptions of the midwifery-led model of care.

CONCLUSION: These results suggest that there is an urgent need for awareness, knowledge, and educational initiatives to help nursing students in India better comprehend the midwifery-led model of care and to strengthen the midwifery training in nursing colleges.

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