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MSMC Authors

Mary Ellen Doherty

Mount Alumna

Articles

Birth plan decision-making: patterns of interaction
Mary Ellen Doherty
International Journal of Childbirth Education, v18, n2, 2003, p27-33
A birth plan is a vehicle of communication for all involved in the childbearing season. It is a tapestry of women's voices as they plan for the miracle of birth and plays a significant role on the path to a positive birth experience. This study describes interaction patterns between prenatal clients and nurse-midwives with regard to decision-making in developing a birth plan. Three distinct patterns of interaction emerged from the data. Findings suggest that the manner in which nurse-midwives and other healthcare providers approach a birth plan with clients has important implications for clinical practice.

The lived experience of widowhood during pregnancy
Mary Ellen Doherty, Elizabeth Scannell-Desch
Journal of Midwifery & Women's Health, v53, n2, 2008, p103-109
Approximately 7 million women in the United States become widows each year. It is not known how many women are pregnant at the time of their husband's death. This study describes the lived experience of widowhood during pregnancy as defined by 10 widows whose husbands were killed in the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks or while they served in the US military during the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. Purposive sampling was used and data were generated using four core questions. The research methodology was phenomenology, and interviews were conducted until data saturation was achieved. Eight themes emerged from data analysis: (1) Denying versus dealing with reality: He's not coming home; (2) Navigating pregnancy: Flying solo while running on empty; (3) Planning for birth: Gathering my team; (4) My safety net: A band of sisters; (5) Unplanned journey: A bittersweet homecoming; (6) Being there: Network of family and friends; (7) Not being there: Let down by others; and (8) Re-creating home: A new normal. These themes described the emotions, vulnerability, challenges, and issues experienced by these women. Women's health care providers can serve as advocates for widows as well as teaching others about the grieving process. This study gave these women who became widowed while pregnant a voice.

Therapeutic alliance: a concept for the childbearing season
Mary Ellen Doherty
The Journal of Perinatal Education, v18, n3, 2009, p39-47
This analysis was conducted to describe the concept of therapeutic alliance and its appropriateness for health-care provider-client interactions during the childbearing season. The concept has been defined in other disciplines. A universal definition suggested a merging of efforts directed toward health. A simple and concise definition evolved, which is applicable to the childbearing season as well as to health-care encounters across the life span. This definition states: Therapeutic alliance is a process within a health-care provider-client interaction that is initiated by an identified need for positive client health-care behaviors, whereby both parties work together toward this goal with consideration of the client's current health status and developmental stage within the life span.

Midwifery care: reflections of midwifery clients
Mary Ellen Doherty
The Journal of Perinatal Education, v19, n4, Fall 2010, p41-51
The purpose of this study was to describe the lived experience of midwifery clients throughout the life span. A qualitative study using a phenomenological approach was employed. In-depth interviews were conducted with a purposive sample of 12 midwifery clients. The research question was: What has been your experience with midwifery care? Interviews were audio-recorded and transcribed verbatim. Data saturation was achieved and analysis procedures from Colaizzi were used. Five themes emerged from the data: 1) decision to seek midwifery care; 2) working together in a therapeutic alliance; 3) formulating a birth plan; 4) childbirth education; and 5) nurse-midwives as primary health-care providers throughout the life span. There is much to learn from listening to the voices of midwifery clients.

Experiences of U.S. military nurses in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, 2003-2009
Mary Ellen Doherty, Elizabeth Scannell-Desch
Journal of Nursing Scholarship, v42, n1, 2010, p3-12
The purpose of this study is to describe the lived experience of U.S. military nurses who served in Iraq or Afghanistan during the war years 2003 to 2009, and life after returning from war.

Women's health and hygiene experiences during deployment to the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, 2003 through 2010
Mary Ellen Doherty, Elizabeth Scannell-Desch
Journal of Midwifery & Women's Health, v57, n2, 2012, p172-177
The purpose of this study was to describe women's health and hygiene experiences during their deployment to Iraq and Afghanistan during the war years, 2003 through 2010.