Covid-19 prompted unexpected change to the way’s whānau expect to birth and parent infants and young children. Women’s Health Action surveyed 465 people living in Aotearoa New Zealand on their experiences of being pregnant, birthing and caring for young children during Covid-19.

The key themes this survey addressed were birthing, breastfeeding, education and antenatal care, access to equipment, support, wellbeing and childcare.

Anxieties predominantly centred around;

  • Lack of information
  • Changes to birth plans
  • Loss of access to in-person care
  • Declines in mental health and wellbeing
  • Difficulties with balancing childcare and working while home
  • Losing support networks
  • Inability to access needed equipment for pregnancy/infancy

Such data provides a unique understanding of the experiences of pregnant people and those with infants and young children during a national state of emergency. These insights highlight areas of improvement that organisations can incorporate in order to be responsive and resilient in times of crisis.

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