Skip to main content

Table 5 Mistreatment, stratified by SES, and elevated pregnancy/social risk (n = 2138)

From: The Giving Voice to Mothers study: inequity and mistreatment during pregnancy and childbirth in the United States

  Low SES Elevated pregnancy risks Elevated social risks
Yes (n = 743) No (n = 1395) Yes (n = 441)a No (n = 1697) Yes (n = 176)b No (n = 1962)
n (%) n (%) n (%) n (%) n (%) n (%)
Your private or personal information was shared without your consent 12 (1.6) 14 (1.0) 10 (2.3) 16 (0.9) 5 (2.8) 21 (1.1)
Your physical privacy was violated (i.e., being uncovered or having people in the delivery room without your consent) 47 (6.3) 70 (5.0) 37 (8.4) 80 (4.7) 23 (13.1) 94 (4.8)
Health care providers (doctors, midwives, or nurses) shouted at or scolded you 89 (12.0) 93 (6.7) 68 (15.5) 114 (6.7) 27 (15.3) 155 (7.9)
Health care providers threatened to withhold treatment or to force you to accept treatment you did not want 48 (6.5) 49 (3.5) 34 (7.7) 63 (3.7) 17 (9.7) 80 (4.1)
Health care providers threatened you in any other way 19 (2.6) 25 (1.8) 13 (2.9) 31 (1.8) 5 (2.8) 39 (2.0)
Health care providers ignored you, refused your request for help, or failed to respond to requests for help in a reasonable amount of time 78 (10.5) 88 (6.3) 53 (12.0) 113 (6.7) 23 (13.1) 143 (7.3)
You experienced physical abuse (including aggressive physical contact, inappropriate sexual conduct, a refusal to provide anesthesia for an episiotomy, etc.) 19 (2.6) 8 (0.6) 10 (2.3) 17 (1.0) 6 (3.4) 21 (1.1)
Any mistreatment (one or more of the above) 160 (21.5) 209 (15.0) 123 (27.9) 246 (14.5) 53 (30.1) 316 (16.1)
  1. aElevated pregnancy risk status: Women were grouped as having pregnancy risk factors if they reported a pre-pregnancy BMI of 40 or higher, were carrying twins, or reported that they experienced high blood pressure, gestational diabetes or other health complications during pregnancy (including breech baby, problems with baby’s growth/health, preterm labour, but not preterm birth)
  2. bHistory of social risks: To distinguish those who may experience differential treatment because of social factors, we grouped together women who reported substance use (smoking or daily alcohol use during pregnancy, and/or drug dependence during pregnancy), women with a history of incarceration (herself or partner), involvement of child or family services, and/or reported intimate partner violence