ACTIVITIES & OUTPUTS

1. Desk Review: 'Cancer during pregnancy: its influence on the woman wellbeing and the mother-child relationship'
 

The review will cover the following topics: early assessment of parents’ psychological well-being during pregnancy; levels and types of distress; an analysis of cognitive aspects, emotional processes, and maternal attachment; the quality of the relationship with partners; analysis of resources that contribute to the patient’s ability to cope with the diagnosis and treatment plans; strategies for empowerment; strategies and treatments to maintain a parental role and to function as “good mother”; strategies and treatments for promoting mother-baby bonding.


2. Guidelines: “Recommendations for a positive maternity experience in women with cancer"

Aimed at maternity health professionals/services to include recommendations about providing information, advice and support, from diagnosis, through treatment and longer-term management.
They will be evidence-based so all decisions will be supported with the best available research evidence identified through a literature review. An absence of high quality evidence , however, does not preclude a structured use of expert consensus if an important quality concern needs to be addressed.

 

Expected topics:

  • strategies for empowerment;

  • psychological wellbeing and the role of maternity staff;

  • strategies and treatments to maintain a parental role and to function as “good mother” ;

  • promoting mother-baby bonding with alternative strategies.

 

The partnership wants the end product to be a starting point for performance improvement; and it strongly believes that it has to be the result of a balance between rigor and pragmatism. With this in mind, two other actions will contributes to the final development:

 

  • structured interviews with women that have been through the experience of pregnancy in cancer

  • feedback from partners' health professionals on the implementation and evaluation of the guidelines.


3. A reflection paper

Intended to stimulate the debate on the need to include the results of the project in the already existitng European Cancer Observatory in order to inform future research.
 

While various researchers have highlighted the importance of investigating psychological aspects in women with cancer during pregnancy these have not been explored sufficiently.

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