An ethnographic study evaluating emergency obstetric care education and training in a remote, fragile region of Southeast Asia: study protocol

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Aim: To evaluate emergency obstetric care education and training within a medical assistant training program, being delivered in a remote, fragile region of Southeast Asia. This will aid in the identification of potential areas of enhancement to improve the management of obstetric emergencies. Design: An ethnographic study, adopting a multi-methods approach. Methods: Emergency obstetric care education and training will be assessed through documentary analysis and interviews (online or face-to-face) with educators and trainers (N ~ 6–7). Student experiences will be explored using in-person focus groups, facilitated by an external trainer involved in delivering the program (N ~ 10–12). A reflective field diary will provide insight into the lived experience of postgraduate students (N ~ 4–5). Data will be collected between May 2022 and May 2023. The full data set will be triangulated and analysed using the READ approach; (1) ready your materials, (2) extract data, (3) analyse data and (4) distil your findings. Institutional ethical approval was obtained from a university in October 2021, and inter-country regional access was gained following adherence to their local ethical requirements. Implications for the Profession and Patient Care: The findings from this study may help to inform the future design of the medical assistant training program. It is anticipated that the knowledge gained from this study will enhance the education and training of mid-level health providers at local, national, and international levels. This work intends to contribute to addressing Sustainable Development Goal 3, Target 1 of reducing maternal mortality to 70:100,000 live births in low-income countries. Reporting Method: This protocol adhered to the Standards for Reporting Qualitative Research (SRQR) checklist. Patient or Public Contribution: No formal PPI has been undertaken; however, stakeholders involved in delivering the education and training have been consulted.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7860–7870
Number of pages11
JournalNursing Open
Issue number12
Early online date14 Oct 2023
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 13 Nov 2023

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was funded by the Northern Ireland Department for the Economy (DfE) Postgraduate Studentship (2020/2021–2022/2023).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 The Authors. Nursing Open published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


  • Global Health
  • Health Personnel
  • Obstetric Labor Complications
  • Remote
  • Southeast Asia
  • Training
  • Education
  • Maternal Health
  • maternal health
  • obstetric emergencies
  • training
  • remote
  • health personnel
  • fragile


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