Vanora Hundley BN, RGN, RM, MSc, PhD, FHEA
Vanora is Professor of Midwifery (previously Deputy Dean for Research and Professional Practice and Acting Executive Dean) in the Faculty of Health & Social Sciences. She is an internationally recognised midwifery researcher, having written over 100 peer-reviewed research articles on pregnancy, maternity care and midwifery. She has led a range of studies in the reproductive health field both in the UK and internationally. She conducted one of the first randomised controlled trials of midwife-led care. More recent work has examined the role of labour practices and their impact on maternal and neonatal outcomes, both in low income and high income countries. She is a member of the International Early Labour Research Group.
Vanora has worked as a nurse and midwife in UK, Hungary and the USA. She is an adviser to the World Health Organization and serves on a number of international research groups. She is currently Reproductive Health and Childbirth Specialty Lead for CRN Wessex and a mentor in the UK’s NIHR Academy. Vanora is passionate about research utilisation and believes that researchers must work closely with colleagues in both practice and education to ensure that research is relevant and that it is utilised. Vanora developed Bournemouth University’s innovative Clinical Academic Doctoral Programme.
Vanora’s research methods expertise is in program evaluation, questionnaire surveys and in measuring consumer preferences for models of care.
My current research studies / areas of interest include:
(1) Early Labour support. We have completed two randomised controlled trials looking at interventions to support women in early labour:
• BALL Trial
• Let’s Talk Early Labour (L-TEL) Trial.
Findings from these two trials are being used to develop an interactive App to support women in the latent phase of labour. A further doctoral study is underway exploring pain in early labour.
(2) Media, culture and health seeking behaviour: can the relationship be changed? This area of work examines the role that the media plays in influencing decisions surrounding childbirth. It includes:
• a study exploring the media as a commercial determinant of health;
• an exploration of midwives’ role in using social media to improve communication.
(3) Promoting midwifery in Low- and Middle-Income Countries. We are currently working with colleagues in Tribhuvan University in Nepal and the Aga Khan University in Pakistan to explore MNCH health system responsiveness to disasters.
Previous research in this area has included a project to scale up midwifery education, funded by the German Development Agency and led by Prof Edwin van Teijlingen. This collaborative project involved colleagues in the National Academy of Medical Sciences in Nepal and Dalarna University in Sweden.
(4) Strengthening midwifery research. Working with the Royal College of Midwives, we are developing three i-learn units to support midwives’ understanding of the research process.