This session will discuss the above mentioned study and provide background to its origins. It will summarise some of the risks that the obese pregnant woman and their unborn babies face. A brief outline of the research methodology will be given. The three key themes that emerged will then be introduced: ‘situational context of practice’, ‘constructing partnerships with women’, ‘midwife as a public health agent’. However, the focus of the presentation will be concerned with discussing midwives’ communication skills, how they develop and how they are learned, discussing the institutional facilitators and barriers that professionals make use of in their everyday work.
The session will conclude with ideas for future research in this area aimed at strengthening midwifery practice and facilitating professionals to raise ‘sensitive’ topics in a structured, confident but non-threatening manner.