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Measuring the unknown: we need to measure all experiences important to women regarding their antenatal care
  1. Caroline Davenport,
  2. Lesley Smith
  1. Nursing and Midwifery, University of Hull, Hull, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Caroline Davenport, Nursing and Midwifery, University of Hull, Hull, UK; c.j.davenport{at}

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Commentary on: Mehrtash H, Stein K, Barreix M, Bonet M, Bohren MA, Tunçalp Ö. Measuring women’s experiences during antenatal care (ANC): scoping review of measurement tools. Reprod. Health 2023; 20(1):150.

Implications for practice and research

  • Outcome measures of maternity care are limited in scope to evaluating experiences of intrapartum care, and therefore may not capture women’s experiences of care during the entire antenatal period.

  • Research that explores aspects of antenatal care that are important to maternity service users themselves would be beneficial to inform the development of instruments and measures to capture a broader range of antenatal care experiences.


Antenatal care (ANC) is the care given to women by healthcare professionals throughout pregnancy to childbirth, which should commence in early pregnancy. This is the first opportunity for most mothers to encounter their healthcare,1 and has the potential to support women to enjoy a ‘positive pregnancy’.2 …

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  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; internally peer reviewed.