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BN, RGN, RM, MSc, PhD, FHEA Vanora is Deputy Dean for Research and Professional Practice (previously Acting Executive Dean 2018-2019). As Professor of Midwifery and an experienced midwifery researcher, Vanora has led a range of studies in the reproductive health field both in the UK and internationally. She has worked as a nurse and midwife in UK, Hungary and the USA. She is an adviser to the World Health Organisation and serves on a number of international research groups. Vanora is currently a Reproductive Health and Childbirth Specialty Lead for CRN Wessex. She 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 and leads 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. She conducted one of the first randomised controlled trials (RCT) of midwife-led care, which forms part of the Cochrane review of birth settings. 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. Examples include a systematic review of clean birth kits (CBKs) and their role in the prevention of maternal and newborn mortality in low income countries, and a cluster RCT of a decision tool to support midwives caring for women in early labour.

Research

My current research studies / areas of interest include:

(1) A study of the barriers within hospitals to women seeking facility birth in Nepal. This study, funded by Wellbeing of Women, is exploring the views of health providers on barriers to facility birth.

(2) Media, culture and health seeking behaviour: can the relationship be changed? This area of work examines the role of media representations on behaviour in relation to early labour and childbirth. We have completed a systematic review and are currently seeking funding for primary data collection.

(3) The role of evidence in reducing unnecessary intervention in childbirth.
This area of work involves both public participation events (for example we held a debate on choice regarding caesarean section as part of the BU Festival of Learning) and an exploration of how women access and use information about childbirth.

(4) Slovenian midwives' views of the examination of the newborn - who's role is it? We held a multidisciplinary meeting in Slovenia earlier this year to inform this area of work. We are currently completing the analysis of a questionnaire survey of midwives' views.

(5) The use of evidence resources in midwifery training and practice. We are collaborating with Queens University Belfast on a project examining midwifery students’ interpretation of systematic review evidence.

My current research studies / areas of interest include:
(1) Promoting midwifery education in Nepal; Training the trainer and facilitating change. This project, funded by the German Development Agency and led by Prof Edwin van Teijlingen, involves colleagues in the National Academy of Medical Sciences in Nepal and Dalarna University in Sweden.
(2) Media, culture and health seeking behaviour: can the relationship be changed? This area of work examines the role of media representations on behaviour in relation to early labour and childbirth. We have completed a couple of primary studies. Anna Marsh has been awarded an Entry Level Scholarship from Wellbeing of Women to look at the role of social media. This work will commence in January 2021.
(3) Early Labour support. We have three doctoral fellowships funded through the Wessex Clinical Academic Training programme to explore interventions to support women during early labour at home:
• BALL Trial - Dominique Mylod
• Let’s Talk Early Labour (L-TEL) Trial - Rebecca Edwards
• Pain in early labour; developing support for women in the latent phase of labour - Vanessa Bartholomew
(4) Facilitating health system responsiveness to the global COVID-19 pandemic in low resource settings. Collaborative work with colleagues in the Development Education Resource Centre in Nepal and the Aga Khan University in Pakistan.

Publications

Grants

Outreach & engagement

Media coverage